Long Distance Grandma Makes Good

Eileen Hopkins (Gramma Jamma) 
Grandma’s Point of View

Grandparent-ing at a distance is so challenging – there is nothing that can replace real life experience when building that important warm-and-fuzzy bond.  XXX and OOO at the bottom of a letter or email just doesn’t feel the same as a good old fashioned hug.  But, today I had one of those delightful stolen days when I took a “me” day from work to spend time with my visiting grandsons with the official title of Babysitter of the Day – Grandma in Charge!  I am lucky if I see these two little guys (4 & 7) more than once or twice per year, so this was a huge gift!  

Mr.4 called out from his bed this AM to tell me he was awake but he was staying in bed.  Being a wise grandma who once was a mom (!) I called to him “OK, see you when you come down for breakfast”.  Then, he came out of his room and stood at the top of stairs and called to me “I am going to the bathroom but then I am going back to bed.”   “OK”, I called.  “I’ll see you soon.”  A few minutes ticked by and then, voila, right behind me was this sweet little Mr. 4, rumpled hair, big smile, but no hug – no sirree – this Grandma still had to pass the test.

After a breakfast of spaghetti (A+) Mr. 4 scampered into his clothes after he checked with me about where his Mom was, of course.  I reminded him we had a big day planned and the first thing was the park.  With basketball in hand, we all trouped to the park – such an ordinary thing for many Grandmas but not for me with Mr. 4 and Mr. 7.  Nothing like a little bit of 2-on-2 to warm them up though – Mr. 7 got his very first basket in an adult hoop and Mr.4 played his own version of soccer/football/volleyball/basketball.  I had so much fun – did I see a little crack in the wall?

On to the play equipment although Mr. 7 informed me it was for little kids.  Still, the pirate in him came out and they played and wrestled and played and fought and played and tackled each other into the gravel.  Did I ever tell you I raised four DAUGHTERS – what do I know about this wrestling in the gravel thing that little boys seem to enjoy (until someone gets hurt, of course)? Their mother’s voice echoed in my head: this is going to turn out badly!  Oh dear!  Much dirtier but all in one piece, we headed back to the house to make homemade pizza compliments of Grandpa (Grandma is a career woman who forgot how to cook about two years ago!).

A little TV, more wrestling on the air mattress which was so much more fun than the perfectly good couch and the big moment arrived.  We trounced outside to blow up a pop bottle!  Yep – pop 25 feet in the air the directions promised.  The boys loaded up the ammunition (mento mints) and Grandma set the trigger on top of a 2 litre bottle of diet cola.  Everyone but Grandma ran to a safe distance and I pulled the trigger.  This created an instant fountain of pop straight into the air – every inch of the promised 25 feet! – and immediately down again.  Amidst their squeals of delight I peaked down at my spattered shoes and splotchy pants and grinned – I think I am going to enjoy having some boys to liven up my life!

Next, let’s go make quick sand!  Grandma ain’t no stranger, no more!

This blog posting is not a form of psychological counselling, advice, therapy, or assessment and should not be used as such by any individual. This blog posting is provided only as an article intended to encourage thought and discourse. For specific psychology related services, please contact an appropriate healthcare provider.