Domestic Bliss Report

Motherhood is hard work. If we don't stick together, we'll all fall apart.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Grandparents License

On the last plain Friday of Lent, my mother came over around quarter after five with a couple of fish sandwiches from a local fast food place. Seems she had brought one over some time prior, and had discovered she and her grandson shared a fondness for them. She had promised to bring him another before Easter.
"At what time?" you ask again. Yes, about 45 minutes before supper was to be on the table.
"But I promised him," she said plaintively.
I threw up my hands. "They can have it, but cut in quarters. Nobody gets more than two pieces!"
He wouldn't have known the difference, I thought in a growl. But Grandma would have.

She comes over for dinner weekly; in nice weather, she takes the kids for a walk so I get a moment to myself. I really appreciated this until... I went with them.
She let them run up and down the ramp of one house. The gentleman in a wheelchair has passed away and the new residents have taken it down, but when it was there, she let them. Another house has a bench swing in front; she'd let them go on that, too. "If they didn't want it to happen, they'd have it in the back yard," she reasoned to me. They've since moved it and it bumps into the house, so we've agreed to stop the kids from swinging.
Now, the lady with the bird bath has told me she specifically cleans it out for my kids, which means she really doesn't mind them playing in it. The folks with the foot-shaped-stone path have kids themselves, so they aren't bothered by mine jumping from one to the next despite it being right under their kitchen window.

I know my mother wouldn't have let us, her own children, do these things. I am as certain as I am the sun will rise in the east tomorrow morning. What is the difference?

They're grandkids, not her own children. It's the sentiment behind, "If I'd known they were more fun, I'd have had grandchildren first." It's all of the fun, none of the pressure. She gets to give them back.

I'm certain my kids watched more TV and and ate more junk food this past weekend than they would have if I hadn't been hospitalized. Did they burst into flame, get sick, turn into criminals? No. They enjoyed a weekend being spoiled while my in-laws did their darndest to keep them distracted and happy.

This isn't like letting a diabetic child eat an entire Hershey bar, mind you. It's the normal indulgence of relaxing the rules, not having to be the role model and responsible party all of the time. I've come to the conclusion it's what grandparents are supposed to do. And boy, am I looking forward to my turn!

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At 8:43 PM, Blogger deanna said...

My children are much older than yours, 18 and 20 actually, but I recall those days as well. For my 2, it was their great-grandparents who indulged them. My children still rememeber thier great-grandfather and the cheeseballs who always gave them, though he has been gone for 15 years now.

At 9:17 PM, Blogger The Mom With Brownies (The story of us) said...

Ah yes, grandparents. My father has a home on 200 acres in Kentucky. You can imagine my surprise when I drove up their driveway to see my 7 year old son zooming along on a huge adult sized 4 wheeler jumping dirt hills.

I about fell out of my car!

Those grandparents...gotta love 'em. :-)

At 8:17 AM, Blogger PB said...

My parents stuff my 3 year old with as many fruit snacks as he can put in his mouth, then wonder why he either A) throws up, or B) is on such a sugar high he's so hyperactive they can't handle him any more! Then they give him back, crabby after his sugar buzz has worn down and chuckle as they tell us we certainly have our hands full! Fruit snacks are not, and never will be, available in our house!!!!


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