The responsibilities of molding little minds and keeping little bodies alive was a great burden to me when I had my own children. Not so with the children of my children. I'm now sure that I was right about wishing I could have been a grandparent without having to first be a parent. Grandparents get the best of the deal. No matter what stage the grandchildren are in, they turn into the light of life when left alone with grandma -- At least when the day is structured around shopping for their new wardrobes with granny's wallet full of grandpa's hard-earned cash.
It seems impossible that these shining angels could ever say an unkind word, and they seem to hang on every utterance issuing forth from the wealth of Granny's wisdom. I saw nary an eye roll, nor any attempts to hide the fact that they were with me as we ran into their school friends. This is so different from how it was when I shopped with their parents. Have I changed, or have the little darlings been threatened with death if they upset the granny. Who cares? It works for me to have moments when the babies that I held with such pure joy, again share their most angelic selves with me.
It was quite the day of shopping with my twelve-year-old granddaughter. I was allowed to be her personal assistant as we tore through almost endless racks of deeply discounted attire. I did feel the need to preface announcement of my finds with the disclaimer that I was simply locating the shirts in her size with no judgment as to suitability of style. I felt that this may protect me from too many comments about my taste, or lack thereof. What fun it was to realize that she, like her sister and her cousins, wanted me to stay close by to give my opinion on what she would wear.
All this holiday shopping with grand progeny went so well that I'm looking forward to repeating the adventures with my son's children for their January and February birthdays. Can it be that grandparents are the way to attitude adjustments when things get too hot on the home front? I'd pit a good day with a grandparent against all the antidepressant drugs on the market. At least, grandparents aren't known for being destructively addictive. Well, maybe sometimes...if they bake a lot.