It is very seldom that I spend a day apart from my granddaughter, when I do, though, I feel like a part of myself is missing. That is how I felt this past weekend—like a part of myself was missing.
My spouse and I decided to spend a much-needed weekend away from work and the stresses that accompany that.
We both got a Friday off which is unusual for each of us. We decided to go to a casino about an hour away from us. We had “free” rooms and some other comps and we anticipated a nice time away.
And it was nice, don’t let me mislead you on that point. We had a wonderful time, but I felt sadness that I was away from the “kid.” We both did.
On Friday we went shopping. We hit Kohl’s, Herbergers (going out of business sale), Target and a few other shops. We ate at Taco Bell!
We did a lot of our favorite things, but it wasn’t the same doing them without the “kid” in tow.
A little background…
If you have read my blog before, you may remember that I never had children of my own. When I met my spouse, the kids were an added bonus. They were also an added challenge because I lacked parenting skills.
We got through a lot of hard times and some good ones, too! There were times that the “D” word (divorce) loomed before us because I thought things should be one way and my spouse thought another way. Since they weren’t my biological children, I was often overruled.
Even though they weren’t my biological children, I never thought of them as my “step” kids. I just thought of them as my kids.
As I have previously mentioned, I have five grandchildren (and a couple of potentials which will bring me to 7!).
Let me explain about the “potentials.” My oldest daughter is dating a gentleman who has two children. We already think of those two as our grandchildren.
When my youngest daughter had her child, she felt it was best that we raise her. We have had her since she was around six months old.
Since I’d never had children of my own and my spouse’s children were a bit older—5,7 and 8—when we got together, I didn’t know about all the formative years. I didn’t know about the joys and struggles of raising a child from infancy. I didn’t know what it would be like when she started to walk and talk. These were all new to me. They were new and amazing things to me.
Obviously, I love all of my grandchildren and I wouldn’t say I have a favorite, but there is a special place in my heart for the one I am helping raise. I am G.G.—hear me roar!
So back to the present… We are at the casino and I am up some money. But I am missing the kid, so I’m feeling down. Is this normal?
I ask myself that question often because I just don’t know. My spouse tells me that it is—that this is being a parent/grandparent. I still have doubts because I have never been in this role for a child who depends on me for everything. I have never been in this role of teaching a child to become a “person” before.
So, I miss her and I wonder what she is doing. I wonder if she is okay. Is she eating? Is she having fun at her aunt’s house? Is she missing us, too.
As it turns out, she had a lot of fun during the day, but at night she cried. She missed us! Even though I felt bad that she had cried, I felt glad that she missed us—she missed me.
Being a parent/grandparent
Being in this dual role is harder than it appears on the surface. But I wouldn’t change it for the world. I think I have never been happier or more fulfilled in my life. This is the place I think all of my experiences prepared me for. Like that babysitting job I had every summer. Like growing up on a farm and learning to care for animals. Like going to school and being a little “different.” These all happened to prepare me for taking care of this extraordinary young lady that I call my granddaughter.
I would love to hear your thoughts. Please leave questions or comments below and I will get back to you very soon!