What do you remember about your grandma? Was it her toothless smile or her sagging body? Was it the many lines in her face and the way the skin on her arms jiggled and flapped? Was it the cookies she baked or the time she took to listen to you? Was it the slowness of her pace as she tried to keep up with you? Was it her endless energy or positive outlook?
My grandmas were two completely different women, but each holds a special place in my heart. I have fond memories of both of them. One was a farm woman, with strength in those floppy arms that I can’t begin to imitate. She wasn’t just physically strong, but her ability to get through times of adversity was more than admirable. She lost five of her eight children during her own lifetime. She also cared for her stroke ridden husband for several years. She died at the age of 76. Her body just couldn’t live any longer.
My other grandma was a city woman. She liked getting dressed up. She taught me how to do crafts with her somewhat arthritic hands. Her eyes were dark brown and she hardly ever showed her true emotion, but I knew she loved me just the same. This grandma raised her four children on her own after her husband abandoned them. She lived well into her nineties.
When I became a grandmother it was like getting a second chance at parenting. When we actually go through the process of raising our own children, we make huge mistakes along the way. We don’t always fit the mold. We might leave permanent scars that will live with our kids for the rest of their lives. We can’t go back and undo those things, but through our grandchildren, God gives us a way to repair some of the hurt we may have inflicted as parent. He allows us the time we didn’t have because we were just trying to get everything else done.
Our grandchildren are a gift from God. They look up to us. They are interested in what we have to say (at least until they turn into an adolescent.) They love to hear about our past. They enjoy being with you most of the time. We are the role models that they will eventually mimic.
We may not all be gorgeous on the outside. Our hair is turning gray and our bodies have lost most of their elasticity. We don’t think as fast as we used to or hear every word, but we sure can give them something to laugh about. So to all you grannies out there, Happy Gorgeous Grandma Day to all of you. You are a blessing to your grandchildren as much as they are to you.