A wooden heart on a scarf

Grandma; A personal story

Nevermind being a Mum, today’s post is all about being a Grandma! It’s written by Aeron’s Mum Jean, and she talks about what being a Grandma means to her, her experience with her own Grandmother, and also how her Mum influenced her grandparenting style.

A grandma on a train

Grandma

By Jean

I thought I would entitle this little piece of writing The Best Thing About Being a Grandma, but I can’t as Shania Twain won’t get out of my head singing about being a woman – and then Kylie pops up with Can’t Get You Out of My Head. This is proving much harder than I thought it would be so here goes, it’s just going to be entitled Grandma – Oh no, now there’s Clive Dunn and all the singing Children!

What it means to me

Being a grandma is hard to put into words, it’s so huge. It’s like this little person has crept inside my chest and cuddled up in my heart. I feel so much love for him that I’m afraid to breathe in case he wants to escape out. Sometimes I forget when I’m visiting that he is so tiny. I turn up in full on Grandma mode, so excited to see him, and he looks at me with genuine fear in his eyes and clings on to Daddy for dear life. I have learnt that the softly softly approach works much better; sit down completely ignore him and he comes to me willingly. Unfortunately, this also works for the cat, so I have to quietly shove the cat off my lap to make room. Of course, I kiss the top of his little blonde head every chance I get, mostly taking him unawares so he won’t notice and run away.

The simple things are the best; to watch him play and learn in the park, even when I’m gasping with fear at how high he can climb on his own, and I’m itching to stop him spinning on the roundabout. Surely it’s too fast and he’ll end up hurtling off at 100 miles an hour. It’s so hard not to jump in, wrap him in cotton wool and keep him safe.

Childhood memories

I’m not just a Grandma though, I’m an old Grandma. I must be the same age now as my Grandmother was when I was little – but she seemed ancient, and was a bit of a tyrant. I was terrified of her. She had steel grey hair pulled back off her stern, sharp face into a tight bun. She had a large nose that reminded me of a bird’s beak and we were forced to visit her every Saturday. The four of us were expected to behave, which in those days meant being seen but not heard.

I can see us now, all lined up on the sofa nudging, kicking and fidgeting with boredom. There was always a bowl of fruit on her table that we were not allowed to touch, so my brother, being the rebel that he was, once took a bit out of every single apple. To this day I don’t know how he did it, as no one saw him, but we all knew it was him!

My inspiration

It’s much better nowadays. My own mother was to my children the best grandmother ever. They all knew that she loved them and she would spend hours on the floor playing with them when they were little, and then on to board games and cards as they grew.

I want to be like her. I want my grandchildren to feel my love for them, to know that I will always be there for them and that they are the best things since sliced bread, or in the words of Tina Turner, Simply The Best. Ha ha, now you’ll be singing that for the rest of the day.

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