I didn't have much in the way of grandparents in my life to demonstrate how to grandparent. Two of my grandparents died before I was born, one grandfather, who I struggle to remember, died when I was four, and one grandmother, who I fiercely loved, lived until I was thirteen, but we only saw her rarely. When I was growing up it seemed the thing grandparents did best was pop off.
My husband didn't know any of his grandparents, and I'd be surprised if he even knew their names.
So now my daughter is expecting twins and I'm wondering what sort of grandparent I'm going to be.
If our dogs are any indication they will be frantic little children. Our dogs get spun up at the slightest thing because we can't help engaging them, talking to them, going mad with delight at seeing them when we get home. We wear them out playing with them daily and give them treats regularly.
If our cat is any indication, the grandchildren will be petted but pushed outside to play when they annoy us. Yucky stuff they bring home will be quietly disposed of with no more said about the matter.
If our garden is any indication, the grandchildren might have some stellar features we show the neighbors, some weedy corners we overlook, and some magical, beautiful, truly unexplained corners where fairies live. Regular thinning and pruning of undesirable elements is something we will do as a matter of habit, but we won't mind hiring a professional if things get out of hand, and we'll work alongside to make sure things get corralled.
If our cars are any indication, oh well, they get dirty. You can always wash them. They need to be filled surprisingly often and at great expense.
If our old sweatshirts are any indication, we'll mend them when torn, forget they are stained, and keep them forever for no reason whatsoever other than we love them so.
I think we've been practicing for years to be grandparents and just didn't realize it.
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