The joys of grandmahood
Updated: June 11, 2012 8:13AM
On May 13, we pay homage to the person we were closest to from our earliest moments -- good ol’ Mom.
She was there before we even saw sunlight for the first time. We gave her heartburn and back pain long before she could give us a timeout for causing her aggravation. And even as adults, she still keeps our safety and well-being at the forefront, as demonstrated in a story I’ve told before here, when my mother and I visited the ladies room during an evening out. As I closed the door to my stall, there is my mother’s voice loudly reminding me “Now Patti, don’t sit on the toilet seat!” I was 49 years old at the time.
In my family, we are having the next round of new mothers take shape. My little granddaughter will be 1 year old this Mother’s Day. She was a new vintage last year on this weekend, making me a first-time Grammie. In addition, I just received word that my brother is now a first-time Grampy, his son and daughter-in-law adding a pink bundle to our family roster. Many friends are experiencing the same thing, as my generation moves up the seniority ladder and our children take our place as the young family units.
Believe me, it’s quite an experience. My Audrey is with me three days a week, and I have never been as tired as I am on those nights after she’s left to go home. My schedule is up for grabs, and all the balls I used to juggle so efficiently are bouncing around on the floor right now. But when she’s here with me, she’s my No. 1 first priority, so we crawl around after each other and make silly faces, she feeds me her lunch and I try to get her to sip water out of my cup. When she turns a certain way, or gives me a particular look, I am thrust back 33 years and swear I am looking at my own son. That’s how much she resembles her daddy. (Typical -- we do all the work, and the babies come out the spitting image of the other guy!)
What’s funny, and perhaps I was guilty of this also in my early days of parenthood, is that my son on occasion likes to remind me about certain things regarding Audrey’s care: “If you feed her a hot dog, take the skin off;” “Try to get her to drink from the sippy cup instead of the bottle sometimes” “Feed her what she likes”.
That’s when I remind him that if I hadn’t known those things from my own days of raising kids, he might not be here, as a daddy, right now. But a dear friend gave me a valuable hint when she became a grandma a few years ago. Do as you are told. You are not the parent now, and you must respect the wishes of the parents. I completely agree with her, and for the most part, I do just that.
To all you mothers, grandmothers and great-grandmas out there, have a Happy Mother’s Day. You are the mortar that holds the family bricks together -- the strength of the family.
Send email to Pat Lenhoff at: firstname.lastname@example.org