Nobody looks forward to old age, but the gift of grandchildren brings an unexpected glow, like an Indian summer. For me, becoming a grandmother has a very particular poignancy. I came to Canada as a landed immigrant who built a bridge so my small family — a husband and son — could come from Europe. Like sisters, “Gain and Loss” walk always together. My new future perspective brought loss of my original family left back home. On my life journey in a new country, this summer I got a divine bonus of baby twins – grandsons and I felt victory vibes dancing in my bones to see a new generation making its way forward. I have become a modern, ancient grandma who promised herself to balance all: ancient wisdom and traditions with a modern technology for all highest good of all.
GRANDMA FROM CHILDREN FAIRY – TALES
Even though I cannot conform to the well – known grandmother stereotype as my hair is still blonde in an appealing short – cut, I stopped knitting way back and I would rather spend my time in a gym or yoga studio, I still hold on my inborn “granny magic” as a protracted ritual which makes incidental pains disappear within three minutes, just what a witch-like granny is supposed to do. I also know things about the dim and distant past, like the dark days when nobody had a television, smartphone and use common sense and home remedies for healing at home. I have been dubbed “groovy sexy granny” which is more fun.
MAGIC OF GRANDMOTHERHOOD
Grandmotherhood, unlike parenthood, is not a job description, but a state of being, immutable as the sun in the sky. The title “granny” confers a fixed status in the child’s universe as the ancestral head of the family. Your age, usually such a handicap in the 21st century is suddenly an asset. As far as the child is concerned, YOU ARE ALMOST AS OLD AS TIME ITSELF, and your age still brings with it the traditional attributes of respect and wisdom, reinforced by fairy tales and storybooks. In a practical aspect of all process, once being a young mother myself helped me here a lot, I must admit.
MODERN GRANDMA WITH DEEP ROOTS
The status of being a grandmother is not entirely based on fairy-tale stereotypes. It also has roots in everyday reality. Small children soon find out that their parents are fallible, that they tell fibs, lose their temper, quarrel from time to time and do not always have time to give the attention a child may need at a particular moment. A grandmother is usually different. She has time to give her undivided attention, is not in a hurry when the child comes round. On the contrary, she is likely to be totally at the child’s disposal. She has time to play games, read stories and, most important of all, to listen. If something is troubling the child, particularly something in the parental home, granny is entrusted with the secret. In my case, it is going to be deeper it is me who will speak stories about our back home countries where we came from using our still alive languages of our grandmothers…..
MODERN GRANDMA WITH her commitments
I still work and I love my work as a pediatric nurse/ a life coach and world traveler hoping to do so to the end. But the pressure is slightly off. The future is no longer my first concern, and I take one day at a time and enjoy what it has to offer. As far as I am concerned life has nothing nicer to offer for a woman with granny status like the care of a grandchild, so I will alternate my job commitments to enjoy good quality time with my grandchildren.
BEING A MOTHER VERSUS GRANDMOTHER
Which brings me to an important, qualitative difference between being a mother and being a grandmother? As far as I am concerned, one of the joys of being a grandmother, apart from the obvious fact that the role is a part – time and often optional, is the lack of stress. It is rather like the difference between marriage and a love affair. Parenthood, like marriage, is hard work, a lifetime’s commitment that brings pain as well as joy. Having a grandchild is like BEING IN LOVE. I know our time together is brief: the child will grow up, I will die. The very brevity of the relationship adds to its passion. I see the child’s beauty, which hits me afresh each time, and have the privilege of sharing in its pristine innocence. Once my own children gave me that opportunity, but those days are long gone.
TRAVELING SPIRIT OF ANCESTORS IN OUR DNA….
Here comes my ancient part of being a grandma. I brought all ancestors DNA over the ocean and now it was my duty to connect both ends together. As far as I remember, my grandmother was a local herbalist, a midwife and a spiritual leader from the mountains. This healing path runs in our family and the same spirit traveling through time. One healing spirit travels through your lineage, inhabiting progressive bodies, learning and evolving all the while…..how it will present in these two new bodies? I was quietly wondering, saying nothing to new parents. I just invited our ancestors to come for a visit.
We are at the crest of our ancestral wave, and hold the legacy and determination of this tide.
The collection of the momentum gathered through time is here in its fullness of this moment. All of it. We hold this in our veins – these veins we have inherited as this spirit streams from a body to body. Our blood has this data recorded, as it is the same blood that has existed since the beginning of blood. We are the receptacle of all harvested on this pathway through time.
We encode our reality through our belief system. Ceremony encodes the field we inhabit with our updated vision, and this sets the direction for our subsequent movement. It is a powerful vessel in which to explicitly activate these new expressions.
To remember who we are is to claim the sacredness of our self. To recognize that the sacred is the effortless flowing pulse of what is, knowing our self as best we can in this moment. It is in the choice to let things nourish and heighten us. To have the possibility of being ‘awake’ in ever increasing measures, and to willingly set our intent in this evolution.
AS AN ADDED BONUS
I feel closer to my own offspring since they became parents. It is nice to be needed now and then and to be understood a bit better now they face the challenges I once had to cope with. Best of all, it is rewarding to be united by a common love, a shared concern.
As I said “Gift of being GRANDPARENTS is like unexpected glow” and it can brighten light even into dark corners of your life. I am planning to enjoy traveling and teaching my grandchildren all than I know in this time of a golden age of me.
Eva Figes’ new book, Tales of Innocence and Experience
http://upliftconnect.com/rebirthing-our-ancestors/Words By Lila Lieberman