I’m a rebel.
In a culture that despises growing old and kicks traditional titles to the curb because they don’t sound young or hip enough, I choose to embrace the beautiful blessings that come with the passing of time.
When we found out Victoria was expecting our first grandchild, the discussions began. What would we like to be called? For Anton, it was super simple. He would be Opa, the Dutch name for Granddad. His own dad was a wonderful Opa to all his grandchildren, showering them with love, gentleness and kindness. We knew Anton will be the same loving Opa to his grandkids. The very thought brought tears to our eyes.
So that left me. What would I like to be called? We ran the gamut of every possible title out there. I mean, Grandma sounds old right? It’s not fun or hip or youthful. I’m a young Grandma so I MUST have something besides “Grandma”. Right??!!
After talking about it ad nauseam, I realized something. I wanted plain, simple “Grandma”. It settled over me like a comforting blanket.
You see, when I think about my own Grandmas, Grandma Athelene and Grandma Jane, I do not think “old”. No, I think of two incredible, loving, strong and beautiful women who enriched my life so much. Though we lost Grandma Athelene to lung cancer when I was nine, I am still incredibly blessed to have Grandma Jane in my life.
My memories of my grandmas include wonderful family dinners, deep conversations, fun shopping trips, singing and performing for them in the backyard, sharing a love of good books and family beach trips. They were/are God fearing, hospitable and gracious. They encouraged me in my talents and gifts. I loved and still love them so deeply.
Not everyone has the incredible blessing to be called “Grandma”. I don’t want to be robbed of this beautiful name simply because it isn’t deemed fashionable or may sound “old”.
It has been eye opening how many negative comments I’ve received about becoming a Grandma. It is said with derision, as if it’s something to be ashamed of. The message I’ve received is: growing older is not a good thing. Nothing could be further from the truth!!
Growing older means I’ve hopefully gained some wisdom, life experience and a deep heart knowledge of the goodness of God! Growing older means I’ve been blessed enough to do just that….GROW OLDER!! Some people never got that opportunity and will not get that opportunity. They will never know the beauty of watching their children grow, marry and start their own families. I am getting that opportunity! I’m not old. I’m older. When I am old, good! It means I’m still alive!
When I am with my grandparents, I do not see “old”. I see wisdom. I see God and his faithfulness in their lives. I see grace. I see sacrifice. I see a walking testimony of what it means to live lives poured out for the kingdom of God. I see and experience their love and soak up every minute spent with them. What they have lived, they pour into all of us. To say we are blessed by their lives would be a huge understatement.
I pray one day my grandchildren will think of me, their Grandma, and remember me with as much love as I remember my own grandmas. I pray I will impact their lives; showing them the love of Jesus and leaving a rich spiritual inheritance like the one left for me.
Yes, I’m a rebel.
And on March 28th at 11:12 p.m., I became “Grandma”…
Welcome to our family Chandler Isaiah!