Grand Parenting 1st Lady Betty Gay Apple Blossom Dillard September 10, 2016 There’s a writer by the name of Pablo Casals said “The Capacity to Care – is the thing which gives life its deepest meaning and significances.” How much care; how much love do you have for your grands? I care and love my grandchildren so much, I look at them and tell them – You are beautiful and wonderfully made by God. I wished my grandmother would have said something like that to me, but she never showed me a grandmother’s love. She gave me the worse whipping of my life for something I tried to tell her I didn’t do; my aunt came over to tell her what happened, but my grandmother never apologized. Know this… it’s okay when you mess up or make a mistake to say “I’m sorry” to your grands or anyone. Sow good seeds into your grandchildren’s life. If you messed up with your children, accept the pain, apologize, resolve the regrets and cherish the joys you now have with your grands. A writer by the name of Douglas Jerrold said, “Blessed be the hand that prepares a pleasure for a child, for there is no saying when and where it may bloom forth.” One thing you can bet on taking them for a scoop of ice cream is pleasure, but only if the parents says it’s okay, remember we are the grands NOT the parents, and sometimes we tend to let them get away with doing things that we didn’t let our children get away with and sometimes our children remind us of that; and that’s okay too!
Build and inspire confidence into your grands, NEVER tell them that they will never amount to anything. Embrace them, and let them know that you love them and that they can be somebody good in life. Tell them to study hard in school that education is the key. Teach them early in life about being a child of God. Set an example for them. If the parents won’t take them to church, ask if you can take them.
Grandparents, we are for loving and fixing things, you know that, but we also have to be careful, because grandparents are similar to a piece of string, handy to have around and easily wrapped around the fingers of our grandchildren; they put those little eyes on you and you find yourselves giving in and giving them something that the parents have already said NO to. (Am I the only one guilty of that?)
What grandchildren need most are the essentials that grandparents provide in abundance. 1. Unconditional love, kindness, patience, humor, comfort, lessons in life and most importantly every now and then give them some COOKIES. 2. We make great baby sitters; and what a bargain grandchildren are! 3. We give them our loose change and they give us a million dollars’ worth of pleasure. Ecclesiastes 3:1 reads – To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven. When they are with you there may come a time you may have to chastise them, correct them, and let them know right from wrong. Sometimes it seems like it hurts us more than them, but we have to teach them. Grand children are the dots that connect the lines from generation to generation, and we want them to do great in life; to have a better life than we have had. Each day we make deposits in the memory banks of our grands, what deposits are we making? It hurts my heart when I hear of children being mistreated, dying from starvation, beatings, punishments that are just too harsh. Love is the most important part as we watch them grow, learn and become his or her own person. We must let there be a garden of love in our hearts for our grandchildren. If our hearts can be as pure and loving like that of a child, this would be a better world. Never teach your grandchild to hate anyone. The measure of love is not how much that child loves me, but rather how much I dare to love that child! Grandchildren are blessings from God; they have a way of brightening our lives. Being a grandparent is a marvelous thing to me! They have stolen my heart. I have a 17 year old grandson, a grandson who will be two years old next month, and a five month old granddaughter; Dylan, Caleb and Aubrey. I love them so very much. My question to you again is what kind of memories are you leaving with your grandchildren?
Share your stories of love and wisdom with them. Take time to read to them. Let them know that you’re always there for them. Remind them that they are somebody! Know when to say Yes, and when to say No! 2
We also need to be careful of the advice we give our grands. Give them the right tools to fix problems. Help them to feel that they can always come to you. Give them good reasons to emulate you.
If you have more than one grandchild, love them all the “SAME.” Grandparent – grandchild relationships are simple; we are short on criticism and long on love. We will get down on the floor…you may have trouble getting up, but we will get down and play, that’s love. Know this- kindness is more than deeds. It is an attitude, and an attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference, it’s an expression, a look, and a touch. Make wonderful memories with your grand or grands. Give them the love that will go with them the rest of their lives. You want them to remember that you did the right thing, you watched the right movies or TV programs with them, you said the right things, and you helped others when you could. Your grandchildren are watching you, what are they learning? More is caught than taught, and your words can be drowned out by what you do. If you say one thing and then do another that teaches them that being a hypocrite is okay. When they see you do the right thing and that it matches what you say, then that is one powerful lesson that will be passed on and on and on, and on. By expressing love, sharing concern for your grand, or grands safety and well-being, and being consistent in your behavior, you are already doing a good job of grand parenting. To avoid potential conflict within your family, try to avoid these common grand parenting pitfalls: 1. Trying to be the parent. 2. Buying your grandchild’s affection. 3. Over indulging the first few grands and then not being able to repeat it as additional grands come along. 4. Ignoring boundaries – grandparents who won’t enforce limits and give-in to their grandchild’s every whim when they come to spend time with you can infuriate the parents by allowing the grand to misbehave or over-indulge in candy and junk food, or ignore bedtimes, can encourage unhealthy behavior and make their parents job harder. Grandparents-be a good listener, if they are trying to talk to you- please do not push them away, hear them out, if it’s something that needs to be investigated; do so. You could be saving their life, or saving them from trouble.
Let your home be a safe place they love to come to. As grandparents we want to make the most of the precious family-time we get to spend with our grandchild or grandchildren and it doesn’t have to cost money all the time. You can create deep loving relationship by sharing the things you love, and learning about what excites them. Provide them with joyful memories and valuable life lessons, provide support and encouragement. Grand parenting is an opportunity to play again, to love someone new, to appreciate the magic of a developing mind, and to be needed by someone again. There are many different roles for grandparents. Some grand parenting requires a full time commitment. For others, it’s a weekend together, an afternoon play date, a summer vacation, a chat on the phone. Whatever amount of time you have, make good use of it, have such a good time that they can hardly wait to be with you again. One last thing – remember that safety rule when they are riding in your car. “God Bless you.”