Are you Ready to be a Grandmother?

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

Should you become a Grandmother? Not everyone can fill these shoes – big size, gigantic shoes with flat heels and rubber soles. Before you take even one small shuffle in this direction, let’s examine your qualifications.

First of all, let’s take a look at what is a grandma – a sweet smelling comforter with freshly baked cookies cooling on the counter, butter tarts in the freezer and doilies protecting the living room coffee tables right next to the plastic shrouded lamp shades and floral carpet, always home and always happy for any minutes of grandchild time that come her way.

Now, take a look at yourself in the mirror – go head, turn the light on first! Any silver hair shining back at you – ignore the roots? Do you smell remotely like lavender or butter tarts? Any sign of pink floral apron ties around that ample waist to protect your housedress in case of company? Are those pearl earrings in your ears – little tiny beads? I thought not.

You are a jeans-clad, Blackberry-toting gal with streaked hair and earrings dangling down to your shoulders, aren’t you? Do you even know how to make pastry from flour and lard and not President’s Choice pie shells? Are there even chocolate chips in your pantry – go ahead, look behind the jar of salsa and bag of corn chips?

Now, let’s take a look at your home. In this age of safety-first your own children will be well-educated about the dangers that will lurk there and judge you on their own, health-nurse provided checklist they bring home from the hospital with that little grandchild safely skewered to the government-approved car seat. What is that behind you? A glass coffee table with sharp, unprotected corners at just the right height to take out a one-year old’s eye – what were you thinking? Move that on to e-bay immediately and hope you can sell it before your first inspection.

Let’s move on to your décor – the world-travelled, eclectic look you have achieved with the off-white chairs and bright red cushions with just the right touch of turquoise in the pattern to play off your African painting above the mirrored table. Now imagine a scribbled picture of a sun and a wobbly stick figure with a gigantic egg shaped body with the larger end spreading outward and outward overshadowing tiny little legs which your four year old grandson has painstakingly labeled, Granma, taped front and centre between those two beautiful chairs.

Or going further, imagine yourself at the next department meeting with the Playdoh broach sporting the latest school picture of your toothless six year old granddaughter holding your silk scarf in place. Can you pull off that look? Or will you be folding the scarf just enough to camouflage the bright green and orange paint on the frame?

Now, let’s look at your schedule. When you get the call that your grandchild is coming over for a visit, will that call find you sitting by the phone quietly waiting for it to ring. No. You were on the treadmill checking your emails and pulling up your work calendar, running through project deadlines and theatre evenings with clients and friends.

Are you selfless enough to set aside these pesky worries – your next presentation, the last financial report, the client steamed about a missed appointment – and drive a grandchild to dance class, the one who can’t find the red jacket with the black and white striped hood and pockets that she can’t leave the house without while her little brother is screaming he wants to wear his snow boots when he hasn’t seen them since last January?

Do you enjoy finding presents of wilted flowers and small rocks in your purse?

Have you always wanted to be called Grandma Far Away (far out?) or Gramma Jamma – (be happy it isn’t Granny Gown)?

And are you prepared to quell a tantrum by letting your grandchild play with:
a. the TV remote
b. your cell phone
c. your wallet
d. your earrings (yeah, the ones in your ear)?

Are you ready to listen to little voices read out loud about Woody and Buzz? How about play crazy games with pretend puppy poo or sew aliens from outer space for a best-in-the-world science project?

Do you enjoy being overwhelmed by a love as big as a mountain and anxiety that explodes like an atomic bomb – all for somebody else’s children?

Finally, are you ready to matter so much that if you were gone, there would be a grandma-shaped hole in your grandchildren’s world?

Okay. Let’s tally your score, shall we? … Sorry, but this doesn’t look promising. What’s that? You went ahead and had grandchildren already?

Oh. Then you might as well just go ahead and enjoy them.

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.



  • Dr. Vanessa Lapointe | 2012.05.23 at 5:46 PM

    This made me tear :) I love it!

  • Lynn Krausert | 2012.06.05 at 2:58 PM

    yup, I teared up and grinned too!