Well, it’s this happy grandma’s 3rd day at staying with my three Pennsylvania grandchildren while their parents are away. I’m taking care of my 7 and 6 year old grandsons and 1 year old granddaughter, along with their dog. I got here Monday afternoon and my son and his wife will be home tomorrow afternoon. All I can say is – How did I do this 23 years ago? I guess the quick answer to that would be - Because it was 23 years ago! While that’s partially true, there is so much more to it.
For the last couple of days I’ve been comparing this experience with that of being a young mother with two sons also 16 months apart. As I got the two boys ready for school this morning, and they were outside waiting for the bus, I just had this flashback of my own two sons. It was a deja vu moment! But when my boys were young and I was a young mother, I was also working as an insurance agent and owner of my own agency. I was extremely busy, but I didn’t really think about it. I guess as a young woman and mother you just take for granted the fortune and joys and stress and hardships that you live. I didn’t think about how difficult being a working mother was. My husband and I were (and are) partners in business and in life and we ”just did it”! I also sat on several local boards, worked out (as in exercised) quite a bit, worked in my office at least 40 hours a week, and did everything possible with my boys. They were in wrestling, cross country, track, and of course all the academic functions and events. My husband and I were very involved parents and I don’t think we ever missed an event. To think back and remember all this now is overwhelming to me. If I had to do all that now I think I would curl up in a fetal position and cry!
So I’ve been thinking about this. Why do I feel so overwhelmed by this now when I obviously am very capable of handling it. And I’ve come to a conclusion and an answer: I’ve already done that and now my prize to myself is, I don’t have to do it anymore! Back then it was just what my life was. It was the plan and the progression and now I’m on to Part Two.
As I wrote about in my article, “Design Your Life to be What You Want”, we make the life we have. Whether consciously or unconsciously. The choices we make at each step determines the following step. We all have the ability to choose the direction of that track. Yes, unforseen events can derail us, but it’s then up to us to get it back on track.
Now, back to the present. The track I’m on now is to be a good and loving and very happy grandma. I am very willing to be the caregiver for temporary time periods, but I would not want to do this again full time. In addion to the boys, I also have their one year old sister, little Leanna.
Needless to say, I am busy and tired this week. If I HAD to do this full time due to some unforseen event, yes I could. This is not my current plan or track. I adore these beautiful grandchildren and want them to remember me as a good and loving grandma. When I leave here tomorrow evening and go back home to my husband, my house and my current normal every day activities, I’ll be so appreciative of it all.
I can look back and remember the first part of my life and appreciate how the hard work has paid off and gave me what I have now in my second half. I can also greatly appreciate that now in Part Two I have gorgeous grandchildren that I have the good fortune to spend time with. Then I get to go back to my well deserved current life that is now more about doing for me instead of a full time life of doing for others. And I don’t feel guilty for that at all!
I'm also at: http://over50andhappy.com. Would love to visit with you over there, too!