In June of 2019 I found out I was going to be a grandma. Images danced through my head; of the things we’d do together. I pasted pictures of a few of them below.
This baby-to-be found a place in my heart. Boy or girl, it didn’t matter. I loved that baby in a way I still can’t explain. An idea for a story started flitting through my head. A story for Baby Beach.
Part 1 – Time to be Born – My first grandchild arrived in 2019. I live 18 hours away so I imagined stories of what we’d do together. I wrote this one down and sent it into Vivian Kirkfield’s #50 Precious Words Contest in 2020.
Time to be Born
Baby, can’t sleep?
Here’s a story –
You were tucked in your mama’s belly.
You twisted and turned.
“It’s time, baby!”
But hours passed,
Then a day. Was it two?
You twisted, tried turning.
“Need a little more room?”
You nodded and decided it was time to be born.
I tried revising it for #50 Precious Words in 2021, but I like this version better. Maybe because I wrote it for my grandchild.
But something’s missing in both versions, something I haven’t captured. There’s something special about the night you’re born. I hope if I let it sit, that I’ll find the spark this story needs.
I have a new grandchild, and a new idea. It’s something I did with my second graders when I was expecting. Each month I’d tell them about our baby and how it was growing. Maybe I can take that old idea, and make it new again!
Part 2 – Teaching Grandma – But this time, I won’t be the one doing the teaching. My grandkids will!
They both live in Texas. That’s 18 hours away from Ohio. I won’t be the granny who sees them all the time, who knows them in-and-out. I’ll be the one they meet on a computer screen.
My grandkids are so little. They’re at an age where I’m a stranger. The last time I saw them, we were there for a weekend, long enough to get acquainted. The next time I see them, I’ll be a stranger again.
I never had a grandma, and my two grandpas lived hours away. They paid more attention to the adults. Maybe they didn’t know how to talk, or to play with me.
But I spent a lifetime teaching 2nd grade. OK, it was only 33 years. 😊 But I do know how to talk, or to play with kids. Whenever I had a shy kid, I waited for them to warm-up to me. I was there. I was supportive, but I let them set the relationship where they needed it to be.
When my kids came in for a class visit, they were preschoolers. I asked my 2nds to give them space, to let them warm up to them. I did the same when pets visited the classroom. Too much stimulation is scary, for kids and pets!
So when I visit my grands, in-person or virtually, I let them set the pace and decide what we do. That’s what I did when we were there in July. I watched them, but my husband copied what they were doing. (OOPS! I forgot!)
But it worked! Smart man! They played with him first. They even let him pick them up – all because they controlled the situation.
The best part – when things got diaper or meltdown tricky – you passed them back to their parents. I’ve heard being a grandparent is great, AND, it’s true!
That visit gave me the idea for the next baby book, for my grandchildren and yours. We aren’t the only grandparents who live a computer screen away, and I’d love to help the little ones. The old ones too.
I haven’t started it yet. I’m letting the idea sit at the back of my head. When it’s time, I’ll know, and I’ll start writing . . . Soon . . . I hope . . . Fingers crossed!
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When I write, I can only have one voice in my head, mine. A little noise is fine. But too much, or worse yet, WORDS, and I must change rooms or pull out headphones. Then I can write on!