BEING A GRANDPARENT
o one really bothers what you or I believe in. What really matters is what the consequences of that belief and action are. Human birth is once in a lifetime experience. We are all born within the SPECIAL SCHEME of HIS plans. When we loose vision for His Plans, our existence is zero. One thing that we humans share in common is EGO. This is where we differentiate ourselves from animals. However, when we play our EGO over and beyond, we interfere with His Plans. People, “Appreciate what you have and do not complain about what you don’t have.” What my friends are going to read in this article is strictly based on my experience over the years. I am not judgmental. There is always room for improvement as no one is perfect including me.
The minute I mention the word GRANDPARENTS, I associate them with SACRIFICE, DIGNITY, GRAVITY AND DUTY. (It has to be in the same order). Without these adjectives their life has absolutely no LEADERSHIP. Being Grandparents is a promotion of Culture and Tradition. Growing up I remember my parents saying,” The way to happiness is through compassion, respect and warm heartedness.” Today, I see the acceptance of that fact in the hearts of those Grand-Parents who have means to make their life on this EARTH FULFILLING because, ”It is the only chance that they will have” as Grandparents.
Grandparents provide an important and crucial dimension to a child’s life. Growing up, I remember the mere mention of Grandparent’s name was a checkpoint for us, but today they have less participation in the disciplining process. Don’t children like this kind of an arrangement? Children and Grandparents are so close to each other because they have a common enemy? The PARENTS!
God resides there, where children are happy and healthy. It is a privilege for grandparents to consider looking after their grandchildren as one of their most important and divine duties and not think negatively about the common enemy. They should not have any conflict with their sons and daughters over it. If anything, they should earn each strand of gray hair with pleasure and dignity, because you are in HIS scheme of plans. You are GRANDPARENTS, that is your privilege. I remember when my own parents raised me (us); like most other parents, they were busy with the household chores, work at office, social obligations, hence they might not have been able to spend as much time as they wanted to, with their children. Now that you are GRANDPARENTS, taking care of your own grandchildren should be dealt with PRIDE AND DIGINITY and not with EGO.
Just like Grandparents, grandchildren are God’s gift, and maintaining and nourishing them should be the prime duty of any grandparent. It is like signing a check. Just by signature, the check does not entitle the owner to a million dollars, or to the right of withdrawing even a dime, if the owner does not follow the rules of the bank. Likewise, birthright does entitle grandparents to be grandparents, but not without spontaneous flow of powerful feelings. As grandparents you have a wide variety of DIVINE ROLES to play from the time your Grandchildren are born.
Grandparent’s generation came from incredibly Tight-Knit, and orthodox Value System. Back then; value system worked differently--- just word from your mouth would get the desired action from children. As a respected grandparent, today the key is ADJUSTMENT to the present value system around the globe. It is a whole new learning experience versus the experience the grandparents had raising their own children. Earn the attention with dignity and not face this beautiful experience as an unwelcome challenge. Grandparents used to be bossy with their children but now they have to learn to adjust with Dignity and not Ego.
It is a fact that complications come automatically within a family but grandparents have to be patient and tolerant. They should understand the circumstances in which problems arise. Many times they can solve the problems easily and tactfully by accepting them as a way of life. In many cases now, Grandparents have to move to another country to be with their sons, daughters and grandchildren. They have to adjust with a whole new milieu, one in which, they are dependent entirely on their children.
For grandparents’ generation gap and communication gap make matters worse, but as long as they remember their MAJOR RESPOSIBILITIES, things will fall into place. Rationalizing and understanding will help get rid of all obstacles. Thus, interaction will become stress free.
Professional babysitters deal with children as their job and so dedicate their time (patience. I don’t know) to the children but for grandparents of certain age (as they develop their own interests and hobbies) it can be harder to be able to spend their entire time to their grandchildren, causing stress. This is natural. Here, I have to say grandparents should not treat themselves as professional babysitters because in the latter case money and expectation is involved, while looking after your own grandchildren is a HOLY THING, for which you have been chosen under HIS SCEHME OF PLANS as GRANDPARENTS.
I am sure my friends know the difference too. Children who have their grandparents as their babysitters become more confident and hold their FAMILY UNIT in higher esteem. Just babysitting grandchildren is not enough or running after them or picking things while making room for little legs to run. Grandparents need to be actively involved in the life of their grandchildren. This involves all rituals starting from SHARN SONDER, to MEKHAL to GANDOON to KHANDER and last but not the least welcome your GREATGRANDCHILDREN into this world. Now that is your privilege!
Now where is the time for grandparents to waste or get upset? They have truckloads of work in front of them! So grandparents should set an example of a HOME RUN for the family, where the family is a soft place to fall for everybody in it----that each child, The Mother and The Father who lives inside the FOUR WALLS.
So any parents who want their working Sons and Daughters to be happy and healthy must attend to their grandchildren without any expectations. I strongly believe that in today’s stressful world, grandparent’s significant contribution and the best gift that they can give to their grandchildren is a GOOD MARRIAGE between their MOMS and DADS; so they don’t wind up being in an emotionally barren environment or a divorce situation. Don’t make happy times turn into penalty but into TUITION, because children understand more than we know. Thus, being a grandparent and a grandchild is a blessed privileged; both are unique gift of GOD, and are a complimentary relationship. Enjoy this privilege while you can!
We have to set a good example for our child or children; therefore, if we want the child to respect us, then we have to respect the child’s grandparents. If we want the child to take care of us, when we get old, then we have to take care of child’s grandparents. Children pay more attention to what the adults do than to what we say to them or what they read in books.
Thus a privilege can become a birthright if we follow HIS SCHEME OF PLANS and follow through step by step.
Renu Kaul is mother of two boys Om and Namo Kaul. She likes to interact with people and has a great passion for old music. Her favorite sport is Table tennis.
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Aunty Renu, It was a very nice composition. It is nice to hear some people in this world whole still value their ancestors as a god. Most people just think that ancestors are subordinate. Your composition was so flamboyant, structural, intricate, and genuine. Some things in life just stay, never to be touched a single bit. It just stays in silence as our hearts do. This composition reminded me that hate is never the answer, but the answer lies in what we came from.
Added By Anwesha Ghosh
Dear Renu Aunty, I truly enjoyed your piece, especially as a child who has grown up here in America. Your writing genuinely shows the importance of having and maintaining such cultural traditions. The way that you shared this connection to our heritage with the proper use of such a privalege was really beautiful. Thank you for sharing this with me! Love Iha
Added By Iha Kaul