Herself and I have very important people visiting this week and it brings several things to mind. At times I have jokingly made comments about my age. Our visiting boy is 10 years old and his sister is about 12 or 13. She never seems to stay the same for very long. However, having been a middle school principal, and later a principal including middle school, I know that at that age, the number of years do not matter. She is the exception to the rule that all middle school kids are mutant aliens bent on destroying mankind. Yes, they are, of course, my grandchildren.  And furthermore, you grandparents who think you have the smartest kids in the world, just back off. Those designations come with the ones visiting this week.
Whenever I realized there was a 60 year difference in our ages I began to wonder about some things, so I Googled life expectancy and found some interesting facts. On one chart I have approximately a year and a half to live but on another I have nearly 28 years to live. I shall take the second option, thank you. After all, who is going to see that these grandkids get properly prepared for real life. Besides these two, there are ,uhh, hmmm (?) several more grandkids scattered around that need looking after. Right, some of them are grown and have kids but all the more reason to make sure they do things correctly.
Somewhere I have a sign that was not appreciated by someone who shall remain unnamed which reads, “Grandkids are rewards for not killing your own kids." You younger people cannot appreciate that as yet, but I hope you get a chance to. You young people who spoil your kids and pamper them and raise them as if they never made or make mistakes are living in a fantasy world. If you are in this delusional state, you may be in for a hard awakening or you may stay forever in that form of mental instability.
I once had a mother tell me, very, very forcefully, that her 12 year old daughter did not make mistakes. I wanted to go outside to look for the star in the east but it was already too late for that. If a child doesn't make mistakes it takes much of the fun from parenting. How can you see that the child gets proper values if you do not instill them? Why would you let others set the standard you want your children to have? Oh, wait, I remember now. TV and movie producers know more about what your kids should absorb than you do, so, set them in front of the TV and let the kids choose what they want to watch. That way they will not be a bother.
But, having grandkids visit for more than just an afternoon brings a different world into your patterned existence. There is such a large distance between our ages that we should hardly be able to communicate. Not so much. We do fine and I am sure you other grandparents also do fine. You who are waiting to be grandparents have much to look forward to. WAIT! If your kids are still young, you first must get them raised and willing to share their kids with you. That way you get to do some of the things you have learned are not going to kill a child.
If a small child eats jelly beans before noon, he/she probably will live over it. However, I must warn you that you may not have a happy reunion with the child's parents if they find out what you did. Many times secrets are best not shared. Many times if a small child wants to fill up on white sauce for supper and not eat vegetables, wellsir, maybe they will eat veggies next time. Amazingly they live over it. Then when cookies are passed around they will remind you they ate supper. How can one argue with that?
Sometimes things turn out right. One of the biggest compliments I have ever received came from a great-grandson in a minor anecdote to those directly involved. Near Oklahoma City, on Route 66, there is a cafe/tourist place called “POPS." My granddaughter told her 31/2 year old they were going to Pops for supper. When they arrived there he was all torked out. He thought he was going to Pop's house - meaning me. It took some explaining but was not satisfactory. Grandparents will understand.
Now I really, really would like to hear from younger parents about what you anticipate about your grandchildren (please). Also, I really, really would like to hear from grandparents, if only a line or three, something about your marvelous grandkids (please). Send to me here at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.