“My whole family calls my grandmother Oma.”
Being a grandparent is a funny thing. I should know, since I was one. Wait! Not like that! My daughter’s only eight. But years ago her darn stuffed animals didn’t know what to call me. If she was Mama, then what was I? Gramdma, obviously. NOT! Believe me I nipped that in the bud quick.
Still, the fact that my reaction was so severe tells me what it might be like years from now when she finally does have a child. It is one of those milestones which is both exciting and a scary all at once. I look forward to the freedom of it. The ability to watch from afar and laugh at the many trials I am sure her own progeny will put her through. I pray that she has a fun and loving husband to help her with those. And I also pray I will be able to
stand far enough away that she makes her own mistakes, but close enough that she always knows I have her back.
AT the same time, since we got started late on our family, the day this happens may be so far in the future that I will be too blind to see it. We joke that at her wedding my husband will need a cane to walk her down the aisle. Since I hope she gets to enjoy those early days with her husband, free of children, how much older will we be when we turn up our hearing aides to hear the patter of tiny feet.
Still, there is hope that I will at least be able to remember my grandchildren’s names. Last week I saw a news post by the NY Times about the role that brain degeneration has plays on memory loss as we get older. (link). It is nice to know that, someday, if I connect electrodes to my head every night at bedtime, I’ll be able to wake up remembering that the little voice who calls me grandma on the phone is not actually one of her stuffed animals pretend talking.
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