10 Ways Being a Grandparent Will Change YOU
BY CHERYL HARBOUR
Some of these changes will happen instantly. For example, the first time you see your new grandbaby, your heart will melt and stay melted for many, many years. Other changes will happen gradually over the days, weeks, and years you are spending time together.
Being a grandparent…
1. Gives you a new name
Will you be NaNa, Nanny, Granny, GaGa, Mimi or Mamie? PaPa, PopPop, Boopa, Granddad or Gramps? The possibilities are endless. Sometimes you’ll get to choose your own GRAND name and sometimes that will change when your grandbaby is old enough to talk.
Click here to see lots of fabulous grandparent names
2. It will marshall your energy
If you’ve become a little set in your ways, having a grandbaby will un-set you. Babies have their own rhythms. You won’t be able to control when your grandbaby sleeps, cries, is ready to eat, wants attention or has other needs – but you’ll find ways to keep up.
3. Brings out your playful side
Nothing is more fun than making a young baby laugh. And all it takes is funny faces, silly sounds, and completely letting your serious side take a backseat.
4. Brings out your protective side
Mother tiger? Papa bear? They have nothing on grandparents when it comes to making sure that a young child is safe from harm.
5. Makes you feel invested in the future
Grandparents have told us that having a grandbaby in their life gives them “skin in the game” when it comes to what’s happening in the world. Some grandparents just worry about it; others find themselves getting involved in efforts to protect the environment, preserve the American dream, or create a kinder, more compassionate society.
6. Introduces new forms of excercise
How long has it been since you rocked, rolled, crawled, or hopped? Your grandbaby may have you down on the floor, crawling after a toy, racing down a sidewalk, swinging at the playground. If you’re physically able – enjoy it. It’s a great incentive to get in shape.
7. Changes your shoes
Put away the high heels, flimsy flip flops, and perfectly shined wingtips. What you need for your times as a grandparent are comfortable, sensible shoes.
8. Gives you something in common with strangers
Being a grandparent is like being a member of a big, happy club. Your grandbaby is your ticket to sharing photos and experiences with anyone in the same boat.
9. Gives you a huge new dose of empathy
You will no longer be able to turn a blind eye to a small child in tears.
It may be a while since you found yourself in a food store with your own young child having a tantrum – but now when it’s happening to someone else, you may be a lot more tolerant.
10. Helps you rediscover the joy of small things.
Young children are Zen masters. They are always present in the moment. You’ll find yourself taking time, with your grandbaby by your side, to appreciate bugs, birds, leaves, clouds, and sounds. Take advantage of the occasion. Your grandbaby won’t be young forever.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR – CHERYL HARBOUR
Cheryl Harbour is the special editor of our “My GRANDbaby” section and author of Good to Be Grand: making the Most of your Grandchild’s First Year, a combination of up-to-date information and grandparently inspiration.
A Quick Guide to Grandparent Names in Other Languages
|Japanese||O baachan||O jiichan|
|Hawaiian||Kuku wahine (or Tutu)||Kuku kane (or Tutu)|
Baba & Gigi – The Ukrainian names for grandparents
Yaya & Pappoús – Greek for grandparents
Nana & Papa
Mawmaw & Pawpaw -Popular in the south and are Cajun in origin
Savta & Saba – Hebrew for grandma and grandpa
Geema & Geepa
Bomma & Bonpa – Flemish words that originate from French and Dutch, meaning “good dad” and “good mom.”
Nonna & Nonno – Italian words for grandma and grandpa The term for both grandparents is “nonni.”
Mormor & Morfar (or Farmor & Farfar) – Swedish for grandparents are practical, distinguishing between sides of the family. “Mormor” literally translates to “mother’s mother,” while “morfar” is “mother’s father”
Oma & Opa – German origin
Amma & Afi – What the children in Iceland call their grandparents
Lola & Lolo – In the Philippines commonly name for the grandparents
Meme & Pepaw – Very popular in the southern United States
Ouma & Oupa – An Afrikaans terms for grandparents
Gramms & Gram
Nai Nai & Ye Ye (or Lao Ye & Lao Lao) – In the Asian culture these names are practical. They distinguishing between sides of the family. Nai nai and ye ye are used for paternal grandparents, while lao ye and lao lao are used for maternal grandparents.
Banma & Banpa – No specific origin
Busia & Dziadzia – Polish for grandparents “dziadzia” is pronounced “jah–jah”
Mémé & Pépé – French – Shortened versions for Grandmere and Grandpere
Lolly & Pop
Memere & Pepere
Grammie & Grampy
Mimi & Grumpa
Ma & Gompa
Dumpy & Dodo
Lovey & Sweetie