November 14, 2012
My one and only grandchild arrived nearly three years ago during the Christmas blizzard. While my daughter was being induced at the hospital, my son-in-law and I braved the mall on Christmas Eve to purchase a Christmas outfit for the expected arrival. The only tiny baby outfit available had emblazed across the front, "What Santa doesn’t bring me Grandma will." I thought this to be a dangerous precedent to set, but I was in a real hurry and bought it. I had always been the one to announce to anyone who would listen that my grandchild would not be spoiled by me. Then I saw her, my most precious Christmas gift, and all pragmatic ideology turned to dust. Poof! The spell was cast. I was putty in those little hands.
Recently, I bought her the Disney movie Cinderella. The movie was a favorite of mine as a child, and I was excited to share it with her. The scene of the mice making Cinderella’s pink gown for the ball is one I especially love. But when the ugly stepsisters, Drizella and Anastasia, destroy that gown and Cinderella runs to the garden in tears, that was just too much for my little girl to bear. She jumped up and cried, "Oh, they messed it up and she’s sad. Oh, she’s crying. Oh, no. I’m mad," and she turned her back to the movie. By the time I could convince her to turn around, Cinderella’s fairy godmother had appeared. When my granddaughter saw her, she yelled, "It’s her grandma!" Like magic, somehow she knew everything would be better. And with a wave of a wand and a "bibbidi bobbidi-boo," all was wonderful again. Grandmas are like fairy godmothers, they make life better. In time, the name "grandma" and "fairy godmother" will no longer be synonyms in my grandchild’s eyes, but I will enjoy every minute of this charming illusion until then.
One of the greatest gifts bestowed on a person is being a grandparent. I have such love and affection to this day for my late maternal grandmother and hope to be held in the same high regard by my own granddaughter one day.
North Oak Branch