I’m not a grandma yet (so will you all please stop asking!) I know I’m an older mom. I know that I may look old enough to be a grandma. I know that mathematically I could be a grandma, but I’m not!
But one thing I’ve learned from talking to grandmas is that many of them have forgotten what it’s like to be a mom of young children. In some ways that brings me hope that I will one day forget about this exhausting phase of life with a 7 year old, 4 year old, and an ever-so-clingy almost 2 year old.
But in other ways, it makes me realize how much I don’t want to forget about what it’s like–how exhausting it is, how much you really need help but don’t want to ask for it, how much you really need a break but don’t want to admit it, and how much you really need encouragement because so often, you feel like you’re failing!
I know that I’m thinking way ahead, but I want to remember what my kids will need from me when they are in the “trenches” of parenthood, so that I can be an incredible blessing to them when I do become a grandma someday!
10 Things to Remember When You Become a Grandma
1. Always know your grandchildren’s diaper size and have extra diapers and wipies on hand when you see them. Let them keep the extras.
2. When your kids say that they don’t need any help, they really do. Politely insist on coming over to help or at least just let them know that you are available if they change their mind.
3. Give them a break. They love their kids but they are tired and need time to reconnect with their spouses. Don’t wait for them to ask you. Clear your schedule to babysit at least once a month as well as on your kids’ birthdays and anniversaries and encourage them to take a night out…your treat.
4. Visit as often as possible without being pushy even if you just come over to help fold laundry, clean the house, or just hold the baby for a while.
5. Keep a list in your purse of current clothing and shoe sizes of your grandchildren, so while you’re out shopping you can help find new seasonal items (especially boy pants because they put holes in them so quickly and snowsuits and boots because they are so expensive and some years they barely wear them.)
6. Don’t give your kids gifts that require any extra work or care. They are seriously busy and focused on taking care of their own kids and although, they love the gift, they will probably not get that plant in the ground unless you help them do it.
7. Bring meals often. No one will ever turn down a home-cooked meal from their mom!
8. Before you leave the grocery store, call and see if your children need anything. Even if they say they don’t need anything, you can always drop off milk…and chocolate. 🙂
9. Know your children’s love language. Even when they are adults, they still need to feel loved by you.
10. Listen to them. I understand that moms want to fix everything, but just know that sometimes your children really do just want you to listen, offer them encouraging words, and give them hope!
Lord, give us ways to love, respect, comfort, and support our kids in every phase of life but especially when they become parents of their own. Help us to be a blessing to our children…now and always. Amen!