from grandparents to parents – a second chance?

Well, I have officially entered the second age and with that have cut my hair! It is interesting to me, that with the shedding of hair, and not necessarily planned to coincide with the cutting off of my hair, I also made some other big decisions in my life (more to come on that in future posts).

When we became the guardians of our grandchildren, I had intended to write regularly about our experience. One, because I found out that over 175,000 known grandparents in our country are raising their grandchildren. No telling how many are not known, but I would bet double. Second, because I am learning so much about life that I am not sure I would have learned otherwise, I wanted to share it. And last, because I wanted to contribute good energy to the world.

Well, here we are YEARS later, and this is my first post about it all. But, one of those decisions I made as I watched the hair fall to the ground, was to rededicate to writing about our experience.

So, when our grandson was 2 and our granddaughter, 1, we welcomed them and their parents into our home. And, at that point, we became caregivers to some degree. But, because Mom and Dad were present, Brian and I could come and go as we pleased. We just had a big, happy and full home. Of course there were the typical sleepless nights when the kids were not feeling well, but in general, our life continued much as it had before. Fast forward, omit many details for the sake of privacy, we soon became the primary caregivers and now, with Mom not in the picture and Dad around a day a week, Brian and I have become parents again. It has been several years and emotions are rebalanced, everyone feels loved and our (Brian and I) life is completely different.

This has been quite the journey and now, with a 7 and 6-year-old, I have learned some important lessons.

  • Major lesson – we are the parents we are taught to be. So the first time around, to some degree, I was the parent I had learned to be from my own parents. I parented the first time in an age pre-internet, where my best sources of information on how to do it came from library books, other people and of course, the television 🙂 The second time, I am parenting from the experience of having done it before and knowing what I did well and what I could have done better. Now I KNOW the LONG term results of doing or not doing certain things.
  • Second lesson – every moment is a teaching/learning opportunity. It is not about getting the kids to do what you want them to do in each moment, but rather, at least as I see it, it is about teaching them the potential of each moment and how the choices each person makes to act, feel and think in that moment will affect the rest of their life. Life happens all around us, but what those events mean, and therefore, what “life is all about” are up to each and every one of us. But unless we are taught this at a young age, we grow up with the idea that we are powerless, that life happens to us.
  • Third – keeping your room clean does matter.
  • Fourth – many people lose their innocence and therefore love of life as they grow but it can be recaptured and cultivated.
  • Fifth – you have to play and laugh, listen to music and dance, explore and adventure, and treasure every moment that comes along because we really only have the moment of now.
  • Sixth and last for today – your children will NOT necessarily become the person you are, BUT they will learn to see life the way you do UNLESS you teach them the power of making their own choices, developing their own perception and encourage them to be open to the idea that there is no limit to the way you can get 4.

For those of you who are parents the second time around, leave a comment, share your stories, help support the hundreds of thousands of people out there who are trying to do a good thing.

Have a lovely day!

EC

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