This past weekend was one that grandparents truly appreciate. Our grandchildren came up from Mass. for the weekend. Their ages are 4, 7, and 9. Needless to say, they are and were full of energy and constant movement. That, is something that does take a bit of getting used to especially when our home on an average day is a quiet place of refuge from the craziness of everyday life. Our home is a sanctuary where at times now and again the quiet gets disrupted by the wonder and amazement of children “running wild” as my son likes to say in a place where they can be kids, have fun with boundaries that only grandparents can really understand. Yes, we are the “crazy” ones who take the time to get on our hands and knees and play “Chutes and Ladders” or put together a jigsaw puzzle, romp in the snow, have snowball fights and in general enjoy the company of little ones when the time allows in their schedules.
My wife and I noticed immediately upon the birth of our first granddaughter that something was very different in the relationship between grandchild and grandparent. Being a parent is a special role we all play within the framework of family but the role of grandparent is a very different animal. Until you experience the relationship between your grandchild and yourself can you truly understand the uniqueness it truly is. First of all, there is a bond that is immediate, complete, and refreshing all at once. It’s one of those connections that is almost impossible to explain or put into words, yet is almost palpable. I took me a while before I understood what grand-parenting was all about. It is like an altered universe where enjoying each other’s company is far enough away from the parenting role that one can simply “enjoy” each other for who they are.
It’s not a fake relationship based on the premise of give and take but it is something entirely real, reachable, touchable, and full of magic moments. Each of those moments is different from one to the next and the emotions each conjures up deep within one’s heart is so full of life, so raw with love that if you aren’t looking one moment after another will pass and leave you spellbound at the brilliance of tying shoes or tickling each other. Yes, my wife and I caught on real fast as to what the genius of what grand-parenting is all about. It’s about love – real love that is based upon just being “without strings”. It’s about a pure love for each other that is not based on any thing or interest but based upon total acceptance of who you are without judgement or question. It is a special bond that gets forged the moment each lays eyes on the other. You get to experience a love that is so pure at times it will cause you to pinch yourself to make sure you are not in a dream making up each moment like you did once upon a time. The years and yes, decades that separate you vanish simply because of the uniqueness of a relationship that is based on love, is fed by love, and is grown through the mutual acceptance of each other’s love without question.
I would love to hear from you as to your relationship with your grandchild(ren).