Thursday, February 1, 2007

Grandmothers Are The Queen Of Do-Overs

All of my life I have wanted to have a second chance – to undo or redo that which is broken, that which I messed up. Now for the first time in my life, I have that chance.

Being a grandmother gives me a chance for do-overs, for healing the regrets of the past.

Now don’t get me wrong. I can’t go back and literally redo that which I regret. But now I have the opportunity to try again without the hassle of rules and regulations. And I am loving it!

Here are some of the do-overs I am currently experiencing.

No longer do I have to keep my house clean when the baby comes to visit. I drop everything to snuggle, kiss, play, sing, and hold him. The house can go to the dogs. Dinner can burn on the stove for all I care.

No longer do I worry about nutritious dinners and snacks. If the grand kids want pizza, pizza it is. If they want to go to Luby’s, I’m on board. If the golden arches are calling, I respond.

No longer do I have to worry about how I look when I go to the park. This is a good thing, for with three grand kids under the same roof, I hardly have time to brush my teeth anyway.

No longer do I have to worry about bathing suits. In my book, whaling is in. Eight years ago you couldn’t have convinced me that I would ever put on a bathing suit in public again. But for my grandkids, the sky’s the limit. The good news is that there are some boundaries. Jumping off the diving board is no longer an option. But that’s a minor impediment.

No longer do I mind sitting at the park or the indoor mall until the children are finished playing. Watching them laugh and squeal as they climb make believe trains and mountains is better than reading John Grishom or seeing a Julia Roberts movie.

No longer do I have to hammer in table manners and repeat myself ad nauseum. That’s their parents’ job. Besides, it’s a miracle, I hardly notice anyway. I am too busy talking and enjoying them to take notice. But should the need arise, one word from me or my husband and it’s like magic. They pretty much turn in mid course. Or maybe we turn it mid course. Either way it gets the job done.

No longer do I have to worry about singing on key. I can sing to my heart’s content, as loud and as long as I want. My grandkids think I am the American Idol every time, the winner that is, and they continually request “She’ll Be Coming Around The Mountain” and “If You’re Happy And You Know It Clap Your Hands” again and again.

No longer do I have to dread bath time. It has become one of the most fun times of the day. Turning the water red or blue with a small tablet is a mystery. Watering invisible plants with a watering can a challenge; searching for boats underneath mountains of bubbles a game.

No longer do I have to spend wake less nights worrying about their well being. I can spend my time praying on their behalf. I can also use my time wisely to support their parents, encouraging and loving them, offering wisdom or suggestions only when asked.

No longer do I have to worry about showering them with love. I can't control it anyway. It just pours out of me like a flood, covering everything in its path, washing all tears dry, soothing every cut, healing every boo boo.

Now I can laugh often, give more, and generally be present to any situation.

If that isn’t a perfect do-over, I don’t know what is.

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