I’ve been a grandmother now for a total of 5 days and I have made some delightful discoveries…
Grandmothers get to be mothers again This is when I can anticipate my child’s every need before she knows she needs it. Remembering that she likes water first thing in the morning, I have a cold bottle ready. Now that she has to remember feeding times, she probably won’t remember where she put her car keys. I get to put them where they go. Keeping the seemingly never-ending laundry going without the new Dad feeling like I have taken over his home is a skill. I have watched some of the best Mother-in-laws and been taking notes for years.
Grandmothers get to serve in support roles It matters more that the new Dad and new Mom learn what makes the baby tick and what ticks him off, than if I do. Serving new parents with no expectations for myself is freeing for the new parents. They gain confidence in their abilities, they exercise their new-found parent’s intuition, and bond as a family. This is their season and I am honored to play a small, supporting role.
Right now I get to answer the door when well-wishers arrive and grab the landlord to take care of some things when he stops by. There are so many “favorite” parts. The one that comes to mind at this moment is the conversations my Baby Girl and I have each time she feeds Mr. Yummy in the night. My bedroom door is open and I can hear them as she whispers to her newborn son in the dark. I join them as I set a blanket over her cold shoulders. These are the remarkable moments that keep this Mama’s heart from bursting out of my chest.
Grandmothers get new names Here in the south, grandmothers get lovely new names like Grammy, Gammy, Nana, Nanny, and Gigi. #1 Son began calling me “Mimi” several months ago and I guess it has stuck. The new Dad called me Mimi after Mr. Yummy was born.
Grandmothers hold pictures in their hearts Pictures abound for newborns. Mr. Yummy changes daily before my very eyes. So grateful for facebook to share photos with friends and family. But there are other pictures that can’t be posted. Like when the new Mama was laughing her head off at the waiter at the restaurant the night she checked into the hospital. Like when the new Dad grabbed a hug from me after we heard Baby Noah’s first cry. Like when I watched the new parents shovel food into their mouths while talking excitedly non-stop after Mr. Yummy was born. Like when I wake up at night and see her feeding her new baby by night-light. The pictures I hold in my heart don’t have me in them and I am so glad- I haven’t had a good-hair-day since I got here.