My oldest daughter is my parents’ very first grandchild. I’ll never forget how excited they were when I found out I was expecting, and after she was born. They even changed their answering machine message to “You have reached Grandma and Grandpa P.” instead of using their first names. They were thrilled.
I have to say, my mom and my daughter definitely shared an instant bond. She said Grandma (she pronounced it Mamah, rhymes with Grandma) before she said Mama, and even though it may have sounded similar, I knew what she was saying. It turns out I was definitely right, because when she could speak a little better (and she was quite the verbal kid), she called me Daddy and Grandma was Mamah. No question about it.
When she was not quite three, we moved to Arizona for my husband’s doctoral work. My parents came down and helped us move in, but eventually they had to go back home. And you have never seen a more distraught little girl than my daughter was when we dropped them off at the airport. She cried for hours and was absolutely inconsolable because her Mamah was leaving her. Then she told me that she wanted to just go live at Mamah’s house instead of living in Arizona. I told her I would miss her too much, but she had answer for that, too, “Well you can come live with me and Mamah!”
She had to get used to not seeing Mamah all the time, but the bond they shared is still just as strong.
I loved reading Grandparents Rock by Pat Burns, because it speaks to a new generation of grandparents. My grandparents really did seem old, and I don’t remember them any other way. But my parents are not old. Neither are my husband’s parents. They may have a number that’s a little higher, but they certainly don’t act old. This book is full of wonderful stories about how real grandparents have connected with their grandchildren. I have to say, I cried several times while reading it, and while we all know that isn’t exactly unusual for me, it does mean that the book touched me. More than once.
It’s cleverly written, and each section uses the title of a rock song for its theme. The grandparents featured in this book are like my children’s grandparents: young. And funny enough, it seems that not one of them actually goes by Grandma or Grandpa.
I know most of my readers aren’t grandparents yet, but I also know that most of my readers have parents who are. And this book would make an awesome gift for them. Only a few more weeks till Christmas, after all.