If you’re a grandmother, what do your grandchildren call you? “Grandma?” “Nana?” “Mammy?” Some women over 60 feel strange being called “Grandma” or other titles because it reminds them of their own grandmothers, who were much “older” women than we are now.
I don’t know about you, but, I love being a grandmother. When I was raising my own children, it seemed like life was a flurry of activity. I was working full-time, always zipping back and forth from the office, trying to squeeze in as much time with my kids as possible. At the same time, while I was raising my kids, every question was a “first” and every problem had to be solved without context. I loved every second of it, but, the time also flew by in a blur.
Happy Grandparents Day 2016! Today is one of my favorite days. It’s not that I do anything particularly special. For the rest of my family, Grandparents’ Day is just another checkbox on the calendar. That’s ok with me.
Happy Grandparents Day everyone!
Not so long ago, I wrote an article about the important role that grandparents have to play in making the world a better place. The point that I made was the older adults have a unique set of skills to offer the younger generations. We also have a responsibility to ensure that we leave the world in better shape than we entered it.
When I was a young mother, all I wanted was for my kids to grow up and have “good jobs.” My family didn’t have a lot when I was growing up and I was determined that my children would have every opportunity that I missed. If my kids had asked me what it takes to succeed, I probably would have answered something like “Do well in school… go to university… get a good job at a company that will take care of you.” I’m sure that many moms feel the same.
There is something special that happens to the way that you see the world when you have your first grandchild. As a parent, you are often too busy with the day-to-day business of keeping your family running smoothly to notice the world around you. As a grandparent, you are free to see the big picture.
I am a modern grandmother. My granddaughter calls me “Baba Margaret” – and I fully expect the “Baba” (Russian for Grandma) will drop off in a few years. Like most grandmas, I’m busy these days. I manage two businesses and my granddaughter and I live in different countries and time zones.
I ran into a friend last week who introduced her son, saying, “Say hi to Kyle, brought to you by the Unified School District and Pepsi, the choice of a new generation.”
Well, not really, but, in the past few years, many school districts have signed multi-million dollar marketing and vending partnerships whereby the company becomes the schools’ exclusive provider of vending machines of water and fruit juice. The revenue is to be used to create sponsorships supporting sports and physical education. One can only hope.
Summer is my favorite time of the year. When the sun is warm and my granddaughter comes to visit, everything is right in the world. Like many grandparents, I believe that I have a role to play in helping her to see the world beyond an iPhone screen. I want her to experience all of the elements – earth, wind, water and fire. Here are a few of the ways that I hope to enjoy the season. I hope that you find these ideas useful as you are planning your own summer activities.
There is a dreamlike quality to becoming a grandmother. In 50 or 60 years of life you have started new careers, taken on new roles and learned all kinds of new skills. Easy peasy! If you want to be a teacher or doctor there are plenty of books to read. When you become a grandmother, you have 9 months to get used to your new role and have hardly any idea where to even start.