We are not our grandparents, grandparent! We are a resource! Which leads me to ask, what will our legacy be? How will we influence and care for the future? According to the Legacy Project, our lives will span seven generations. And each of us, in turn, becomes a bridge between the three generations before and the three after we were born. As grandparents, we have the unique opportunity to create meaning in our own lives by informing, inspiring and, reinforcing the foundation from which generations to follow will innovate and thrive.
I am concerned that, in the not too distant future, I will be asking my Granddaughter, “Honey, is this the real world or the virtual world?” My Granddaughter will giggle and respond, “Oh Nana. Your so funny.” And that may be, but I’ll be left wondering where I am. I mean, it’s one thing to, have problems with remembering things but, not knowing if the experience is real or virtual is whole different level of confusion.
As a child I was often told to stop daydreaming and come back to reality. I was raised to believe that the real world was where real things happen. I understand that technological advances have been made by humans since the beginning of time. Always in search of a better, safer, easier way. It is what we humans do. It is also true that innovation often begins as a dream. But if you spend all your time in the virtual room practicing for life, your dream will never become a reality. Then again, if we are all living in the virtual world – how are we going to define reality?
If you plant an idea, nurture and care for it, you will be amazed by how big it grows and the influence it has. My adult son was so proud of the tomato plants he had started from seed. I listened as he described how big the plants had gotten. How beautiful and delicious the big ripe tomatoes were. His infectious description reminded me of my Grandfather. It was not how my son sounded that reminded me of Grandpa. Our sons sound like their father. So much so, that I cannot discern which of them is talking on the phone. Thank heavens for caller ID! No, this was something different. It was the words spoken by my son that transported me back to my Grandparent’s farm. It was a specific phrase, spoken years ago by a man my son had never met, that sent me back to the corn fields on my Grandfather’s farm.
I, for one, had not given much thought to becoming a grandmother. So, I was caught off guard and not sure how I felt about this news. I knew I was of that age. I had friends who were grandparents. According to them, grand parenting was the best thing that ever happened to them. Not only that, their grandchildren were the most amazing children on the face of the earth. Other friends wanted desperately to become grandparents, but their children were not cooperating. I on the other hand, just did not see the appeal. I had gotten use to the empty nest and was enjoying the quiet. Besides, it wasn’t something I had any control over. I understood the circle of life, that someday my children might have children. But that was some day, out there, in the future. I guess I don’t adjust to change very well. If I like the moment I’m in, I would prefer to stay there awhile. I enjoyed being a mother. But the time went by too fast. Life became a series of events for which I was not prepared and passed too quickly. It frustrated me that there was never enough time to savor the moment.
I was still struggling with the grandmother title when our son called. He had just witnessed the miracle of his daughter’s birth, a life changing event that we now shared and I discovered how important and rewarding grand-parenting can be.