Are you far away from your family? Not close emotionally to your family? Don’t have any family? Well, we aren’t close to most of our family, physically and emotionally, but our kids needed grandparents. My husband and I learned early on that older people love children! They adore those things about them that drive parents nuts!
Kids need grandparents. They really do. Grandparents provide a buffer to the world that parents can’t. As parents we have to make the tough rules and follow them. Parents have to be the bad guys a lot. Grandparents can be softer. They tend to spoil the kids and love on them more. I’m told that’s because they can send them home when they’re done! lol!
Well, our kids needed grandparents. When we moved into our current house, I was four weeks away from having our youngest. It was a crazy time! After I had him, by c-section, I wasn’t able to go anywhere for weeks. Well, our new neighbors came to meet us during that time and brought fresh veggies from their garden. They were very kind.
They started to bring us veggies regularly and we began to look forward to their visits. They were both retired so as the year progressed, we started visiting them at their house too. Before we knew what happened, we were all in love. They didn’t have any grandchildren and wanted them terribly and we needed grandparents. We were a perfect fit!
Like regular grandparents, we don’t always agree on things but we love each other and except that there are differences. They don’t just bring gifts either. They shower our kids with love and special times. They try to come to their family birthday parties and we visit on all holidays. We do exchange gifts but they are usually special gifts. For Carl’s birthday one year, our two little ones insisted that Carl needed toy motorcycles. They each got him one. They were so excited to see him open them then they promised to come over whenever he wanted them to play with him! It was so cute.
We go there caroling and to show them Halloween costumes and they keep a stash of the kids’ favorite candy. Carl takes the kids out to pick me wild daffodils each spring and sledding when there’s snow. Fern listens to Emily talk about her friends, the stories she’s writing or the dogs she’s training. She makes us scarves and we make her muffins. We exchange different produce from our “farms.” They grow apples and we have eggs. They even went with Timmy to Grandparents’ Day at his school. They love us and we love them. We are as close as family can be without having known one another for our whole lives.
Carl and Fern are so amazing and special to us. And so I say, God blessed us with a family where we had none.
I tell you this to say, if you have no family, make one all your own. You don’t have to share DNA to be a family. Adopt grandparents, cousins, aunts, uncles. Whatever you’re in short supply of, adopt them. We are all human and God made us to need love from other humans. Give love and you will receive love back.