By Joyce Gillis and other amazing GRANDmothers from The GRANDParent Network
Grandmothers impart wisdom. It’s what we do. And all you need to do is ask for a serving of it. We’re so generous, in fact, that some of us (Who, me?) might even throw in an occasional freebie – sage advice you didn’t ask for! In any event, we’ve got it, you need it, and we’re willing to surrender it. We’ve been around awhile, you know, so most of this gurgling font of knowledge comes from simply having lived longer than you have. We’ve been in love, seen prayers answered, argued with neighbors….We know how to roast a turkey, where to plant tulip bulbs, and when to stay and fight or simply let it go. Ask us for examples of “this too shall pass,” and we’ll keep you here for a week, raptly perched at the edge of your seat, hungry to hear more and more and more…..
Now, I’m not saying you won’t find an occasional missing page in the encyclopedia of life commonly known as “wisdom from grandma.” Alas, those do exist. And where do I go when I need a patching and mending of the gaping holes in my own fabric of information, inspiration, and encouragement? Well, to other grandmothers, of course! And more specifically, to other grandmothers who blog!
Its been my pleasure to be included in a bond of grandmother bloggers who contribute toward a goal of strengthening families through a sharing of information and ideas. Each author named below is a fellow proud member of the GRANDparent network.
1. Most women want to be included when a grandchild enters the family. Some step into their role effortlessly. Gracefully. They instinctively know how to behave as a “solution” rather than a “problem.” “Problems” think only of themselves: “Why doesn’t anyone ever call meeee to see the baby?” “Solutions” take advice from this post written by GaGa Sisterhood’s Donne Davis:“What Moms Want From Grandparents.” My own two favorites from this engaging list? “Be active and present” and “Offer help whenever possible.”
2. It made sense to me, a college art student, to learn that Roman senators sought to appear experienced and wise by insisting wrinkles be carved into their marble busts. Leslie Zinberg and Kay Ziplow, bloggers at GrandparentLink, astutely note that aging today doesn’t enjoy the same prestige it once did – but that doesn’t have to slow you down or initiate a “poor old me” attitude.
Wise women embrace this stage of life, heeding advice to “get rid of anyone who uses the words: can’t, never, or won’t!” This essay, “Where Did That Little Gray Hair Come From?” will make you want to toss your figurative cane aside and jump right back into life!
3. Grumpy people. Ugh! Stay away from me! Don’t those culprits know that “happiness is within your reach?” Don’t they know that Susan “Honey” Good has penned a treasury of tips that will guide you to “Be Happy Now in 3 Simple Steps”? Here’s a honey of a treatise on how some people might just be born happy, while others may have to work at it. To this excellent advice, I add a well practiced tip of my own: “Make a two-column list of what’s good in your life versus what’s bad. Come back and show me only if the bad stuff is lengthier than the good.” I’ve counseled this one to whiners for years and have yet to see a returnee – myself included!
4. It didn’t occur to me that I serve as the matriarch of my family until I was asked for a short blurb on why I blog. That answer described my wish to help other grandmothers establish their homes as welcoming havens of comfort, safety, love, affirmation, and infectious joy for the entire extended family. Teresa Kindred, who blogs at Nanahood, acknowledges her own role in this lighthearted, warmhearted approach: “Being the Family Matriarch Isn’t All It’s Cracked Up To Be.” Here’s where you’ll delight in the classy way she wears her crown!
5. This final one is so good that it won a well deserved award for its humor! It’s funny, of course – but really not funny in a way, too. Confused? Well, that’s the way it feels some days to be a grandma. Are you still you? Or are you now somebody else? Unravel the mystery here, at Lisa Carpenter’s Grandma’s Briefs, where “The Grandma In A Box” resides, beckoning you to return again and again, like I do, for multiple re-readings of this splendidly sympathetic and thought-provoking essay!
Author the Author – Joyce Gillis
Founder of WhatHappensAtGrandmas.com a smart site for today’s smart grandmothers.