OH TO BE A GRANNY! (or grandad) ! You’ve possibly heard those words or maybe thought those words? Expressed in different tones of voice, possibly with very different emotions behind them. Take a moment to remember your own granny and what she would have had to say. As very many children today are partly being brought up by grandmothers this is the main focus here. Let’s look at it in this way.
OH TO BE A GRANNY! There is the brag-book granny, proud, happy. My little darlings are so cute and so clever. Only 16 months and can already ………..
OH TO BE A GRANNY! There is another show-off granny. “My darlings have done great things. Their father/mother was like that too.
OH TO BE A GRANNY! There is the older mother/mom-in-law, waiting, dying for a little one. Children married or not. “Just give me a grandchild to love.”
OH TO BE A GRANNY! There is the concerned granny. “Oh what a blessing, in spite of parental neglect. They at least have me to look after them.
OH TO BE A GRANNY! There is the supportive granny, “I get satisfaction from being able to help.
OH TO BE A GRANNY!. There is the disappointed caring granny. They don’t seem to need me.
OH TO BE A GRANNY! There is the granny of the teenage mother thinking, “I’m jolly pleased I can leave this child with my mom, so I can get on with my own life, go back to school, get a job.”
OH TO BE A GRANNY! There is the used/exploited granny, “I wish I wasn’t. I’m tired of looking after these brats. They take my pension money, they expect me to provide for them.
OH TO BE A GRANNY! There is the lonely widowed granny wishing for a grandad at her side and now devoting her life and her time to her grandchildren.
OH TO BE A GRANNY! There is the hopeful granny. ”I’m hopeful that these young clever ones will be able to put things right in our world. That is what I pray for every day.
OH TO BE A GRANDFATHER! There is also the grandfather seeing himself in a place of honour regaling the young ones with great tales of the past, being loved and cared for by everyone in his family.
And so on and on…………………..
A POINT TO PONDER. There are many decisions people get to be able to make in their lives. To marry, to have children, to work, to choose where to live, to come and go. One thing we do not get to choose – to be a grandparent. It is something, a decision, an action of a child of ours that makes us into grandparents. It also in a sense does not necessarily give us power or status. We are done to, rather than doing, even exploited and at times abused.
However, it is one of the most important human relationships. Pope Francis calls us “the living memory.” For some it is a joy, a gift, a blessing, for others a cross and a burden. For most of us one or other at different times. It is, also to be remembered, a two-way relationship between the older and younger, both giving, both receiving for as long as it may last.
Should or shouldn’t our next generation think twice before they make the momentous life-changing decision to become parents and us their parents into grandparents? Should they, or not? Do we have rights? TR FAMILY WEEKLY 10 JULY 2019. For more on grandparents visit www.marfam.org.za/grandparents-matter/