Ok so this is something I have known for a long time because my grandparents are golden but since having my own children I have seen the role of grandparent in a whole new light. The OH parents i.e. my children’s grandparents look after my babies every Friday. It gives me a few hours to do the shopping without two babies in tow, clean the house, or god forbid sit down uninterrupted and drink a warm cup of tea, well given I can do these things alone I might even be able to do all three. They are treasured hours that I would not get were it not for grandparents. THANK YOU!
Thinking about it being a grandparent must be quite nice, your grandchildren are after all YOUR grandchildren, you get all the pleasure from them that your own children bring, you love to cuddle them, get excited when they take their first steps and take pleasure in spoiling them. As grandparent you get to give your grandchild biscuits and ice cream and they love you for it – and you can then hand them back when the E numbers kick in. You take pleasure in watching as they bend the rules – there are no rules at grandma’s house after all. Rules are for mums and dads and quite right too. Grandparents get the fun and the games, they get trips to the park and days out to the zoo, what’s more grandparents get to do all this with the beauty of hindsight having done it all before. BUT what you don’t get as grandparent is the 2am feed, the 6am alarm clock, the refusal to go to sleep or the crying baby at your feet as you try cook the dinner or put the washing away and why should you? You’ve done your bit. You’ve raised your children and your golden years are for golden moments.
Whilst I make looking after grandchildren sound like a walk in the park, I know it is not. Grandparents also put up with tantrums, the crying, the exhausting running after children who run after squirrels and try to eat mud at the park. There are those grandparents who look after their grandchild whilst their parents go to work all day so they don’t have to pay the fortunes for child care and there are grandparents who have their grandchildren over night so mum and dad can have a much coveted night out or nights sleep. Grandparents make so many things possible for parents – because they are golden.
I know this because I speak from experience. It wouldn’t be fair to talk about grandparents without talking about mine. I have no hesitation in saying that I have the best grandparents you could ask for. I have three, paternal Grandma and Granddad and a maternal Nan. All of which have gone above and beyond their role of grandparent for me (and all their grandchildren) and still do. They have helped raise me and guide me, they have supported me in every decision I have made, supported me emotionally, financially and provided me with love and respect at all times – and still do. There are currently 100 miles between my grandparents and me and my children and I hate that my children will not have the same relationship with my grandparents that I had – but they will have me. I will use every bit of advice they gave me, every lesson they taught me and every tool I have to make my children feel the way they made me feel.
So to grandparents everywhere, thank you. Thank you for the help you give your children in raising their children, thank you for holding the crying baby so mum can eat a warm meal, thank you for putting the washing out, thank you for teaching your grandchildren, for loving them, for supporting them. You make so many things possible for parents and grandchildren – we would be lost without you!