Grandparents are a gift. If you grew up knowing yours, consider yourself blessed. Sure, they might have weird habits or be cranky at times but they love in ways parents don’t.
I am lucky to say I grew up knowing all of my grandparents. I’m even luckier to say that my maternal grandparents made a huge impact in my life. They taught me things, spoiled me and most importantly, loved me.
I realize in the quiet moments of the days just how much their influence affects my life. I enjoy entertaining with fine china which is something my grandmother always did for big holidays and special occasions. Arranging flowers is a hobby of mine that I also take from her. In the last year, as I grew in my faith, I remember how steadfast my grandmother was in her beliefs. And my grandfather…well, let’s just sum up my love of inappropriate jokes, baseball and coffee are his doing.
If only I could call them up and tell them everything that’s been happening in my life. I know they would be so proud. My relationship with them was special and I adored them. I wish every single day that I would have taken the time to talk to them more and learn about their lives and the journeys they’ve taken.
I adored them.
As a mother, I can see how special the gift of grandparents can be. When my daughter lights up at the words ‘mimi and poppa’, I know they’re shaping her in ways she will always remember. She will know that a hot dog should never have ketchup on it thanks to her grandpa. Her grandma will help her craft and make beautiful things with her imagination. Together, they will spend afternoons reading and playing in the pool. She will know that whenever she asks for a cookie, she will never be told no.
Having grandparents in my daughter’s life will change her worldview. She will gain traditions and learn heritage. Her vocabulary will be littered with little words of Polish and Italian that she’ll carry on using once she has her own family. She will be a better person because she had her grandparents in her life.
I know that my husband and I won’t always be thrilled that our daughter had 17 cookies at mimi and poppa’s house, but we will be grateful for a daughter who has two more people to love her unconditionally. We will enjoy seeing her grow into the woman she will be someday and carrying on the little quirks of grandparents who gave their hearts to her.