One of my friends shared her thoughts about being a grandmother. This friend has seen many struggles in her life. And yet, she is the most positive, upbeat person I think that I have ever met. She has not turned bitter. She never complains. She always says that she is extremely blessed. What a great example to me!! Here is what Jeanne wrote:”I am not the best grandmother, but I try. I am very regular and plan it into my life to have Natalie’s family in my life. I go up every other weekend and babysit my grandchildren, and I babysit my daughter and her husband want to go away for a few days. This is easy for me, because I am single.
I also play games with my grandchildren and like to read to them. You will want to pick things to do that fit your lifestyle.
“Janelle and her husband are more spontaneous so it is hard to plan anything with them. Consequently, I don’t babysit much for them and really do not interact very much with them. I have to go to their home in the evenings if I wish to hang out. I think the main thing is to consistently be around the grandchildren so they know who you are. It seems that Janelle and Jared want their daughter to have a relationship with me. . . but we are still working on consistency.”
What nuggets of truth! Consistency. You can’t be a part of a grandchild’s life one minute and then not for the next 7.321 months! Especially for young grandchildren who might be frightened of people they don’t see very often or don’t know very well.
The second truth (and I’ve mentioned this before) is that YOUR children play an essential part in the process of building a strong relationship with your grandchildren. As your children understand your desire to be a part of your grandchild’s life, they will more readily do their part in making this possible. They are the connecting link between generations and their support is vital.
As a side note, I find it interesting that these wonderful people who have shared their ideas with me feel like they are not ‘good’ grandmothers. So far, I know most of them personally and know that they are great people. I’m sure if I spoke to their grandchildren, these grandchildren would claim that they had the best grandmother ever! If you love your grandchildren, they will feel it, and know it, and love you back unconditionally!