This year there is a special addition to our family and it will change the way we view Christmas forevermore! We welcomed our first grandchild 2 1/2 months ago and we are mesmerized by this little human. He is the most precious thing Ever!!! (said 1 million thousand Grandparents before me)
The memories of raising our own children are coming alive in our minds as we watch this little guy grow. Starting in January, I will have the honor of babysitting this little gem 2 days a week and I am excited, but Scared!! What if I do something wrong ……. what if he cries for Mom the whole time …..
Then I stop myself and sigh …… I’ve got this, I mean I did it twice already, right?
I have very fond memories of my own Grandparents growing up and as I reflect, they were definitely key in how I turned out. Even though they are gone from this world now, the bond can never be broken. They taught me important lessons and I hope to do the same. In 50-60 years will my grandkids remember me as the Gramma who encouraged them, had fun with them, loved them unconditionally, inspired them to be the best person they could be ………….
Of course they will …God chose me to be their Gramma and he will be with me every step of the way! I have a job to do! Thank you Dear Lord for the BEST Christmas present Ever!!!
My nephew sat with me having a beer after a family holiday party – he is in his 30’s and I am mid-50’s – the conversation was fun and light-hearted. We reviewed the happenings of the day and generally caught up with each other’s lives.
Our family is close knit and we have great respect for the “elders” (of which I may or may not fit into that category … depends on who you ask). Anyways, the younger adults will at times ask questions or start conversations trying to gain some wisdom or start a debate. In the past I would blurt out answers and defend my opinions going on and on.
Sure enough, this evening was no different.
The question came ……… And I had to stop and think. Of course, you have heard this question launched a million times to others and you listen to their answers. But tonight I could sense my nephew was asking from his heart and looking for MY answer.
He asked: “Would you change anything if you had to do it all over again?”
After several minutes of serious thought, I looked him in the eye and said, “Yea, I would.
I would have Smiled More!
He raised his eyebrows a bit, shook his head and said .. Yea!
I think the first realization we make is “That we did it” … ” We actually made it this far” That takes a while to set in as we strut around the empty house feeling oh so … like we conquered the world.
Then — it doesn’t take long … maybe a day, maybe a week and we soon realize the house actually IS empty and our kids are gone to live their own lives “without” us!! It starts to set in that they will survive without mom and dad and they are happier little grown-ups without our constant attention.
Ok … so now what?
So what are we suppose to do? We have to actually refocus our mind to think about other things besides our kids and their lives ………. That is NOT an easy task!! It can break the strongest of strong parents – but it does build character.
We did it … be proud … let them go
That “so now what” question is so hard … it kind of hurts. Is our life really done, where’s the meaning? But you do continue on your merry way (one must) and the “letting go” part will always be there. I mean they will always be there, they are not leaving …….. just living a happier life without you!
If you have given your children a strong foundation all their lives and have been good role models instilling in them the goodness that you want them to experience in life, then it is a given, you have to endure the Empty Nest Syndrome.
But here’s the kicker
They will marry and have children and come to you ……. for advice maybe, or support or just love. And it will start all over again …….. you do have a purpose.