I met up with a Grandma last night. She's just a few years old than I am and has three small grandchildren. I, personally, am in love with the idea of being a grandparent (side note to children: NOT NOW...later...). I'm looking forward to being the fun one.
Two women shaped my image of what a grandmother is. The first is my Omi. She is a wonderful Grandmother. Her Folgers coffee can was always filled with the best cookies, the ones my mother never bought. She always had time for a game of Rummy and even though we discovered that she cheats at cards (I cannot begin to tell you how shocked my brothers and I were as teenagers to discover this) I love her from the top of head to the tip of her toes. Regardless of the relationship she had with her daughter (my mother) I always knew she loved me.
The second woman to show me what "grandma" really means, was my mother-in-love (law). What a gal. Ask any of her children or grandchildren who was her favorite and each and every one would proudly point to themselves. That's how good she was.
She always had a pantry stocked with food, for those grandchildren who were always hungry. Tykie was a beautiful seamstress and everyone has something made by her hands. She taught them to roast marshmallows over a candle during a power outage, and tried to attend school programs and sporting events. On her sewing room walls hang the master pieces of by gone school days. Even though she's been gone these past six years, she is not forgotten.
Having such wonderful examples you can imagine how shocking it was for me to listen to the "grandmother" last night who told me why she plays favorites with her grandchildren.
She had reasons. Reasons why she liked one and not the other two. She justified spending more time, money, and affection on the favorite while she ignores the other two. My lips froze in a tight smile as I listened to her ramble on and on and on. My mind shouted out objections, but I know this woman, my words would simply fall on deaf ears.
Is it just me, or isn't a grandmother supposed to put all the petty, gossipy, back stabbing stuff aside? Isn't she supposed to love unconditionally?
I suppose if that's the legacy she wants to leave, the memory she wants her grandchildren to have of her, than that's her business.
I'm using these pre-grandma years to prepare. The shoes I have to fill are huge, but I had mighty fine teachers. I hope they'll write on my tombstone,
Christ follower, beloved wife, amazing mother, exceptional grandmother who loved and cherished each of us as if we were the only ones she ever loved
I'm just sayin....