As I walk on this Grand Journey of grandparenting, I wonder, “How do others connect with their grandchildren when they can’t see them in person?” Or “How come I’m feeling so sad after I get off Zoom with my granddaughters? Am I the only one who feels this way?” Finding community in grandparenting became a quest.
Starting with others who grandparent
I first started gathering other “grands” I know who have grandchildren they see, either at a distance or infrequently because of COVID. My main questions to them were:
How are you feeling about connecting these days with your grandchildren?
How do you connect?
What ideas could you share?
I asked 9 others and we started a meeting online through zoom. We started our community.
Conversations about connecting as a grandparent
In these discussions, one commonality focused on grieving. Surprisingly, or perhaps not so surprisingly, we grieve the lost time and touch of our grandchildren – the lack of hugs and kisses, the ability to go see them whenever we want, the fear of giving them the virus or vice versa. Grieving because of COVID showed us the losses we have experienced. How does that resonate with you?
In addition to that grieving, boundary navigation in our families needs new charting. One side of our family may have a strict protocol for visiting each other, while the other side may have the doors wide open. This can put us as grandparents in the middle even between siblings. Or it may put us on the outside of the family since we are deemed “too cautious.”
The encouraging thing about our “grands” conversations becomes the realization that we’re not alone. We encourage each other, provide insights and walk alongside each other as we navigate these uncertain times. How do you navigate these family conversations?
What becomes most important
In the conversations, as we share how we are interacting with our grandchildren, we pick up tips and tricks to consider with our own grandchildren.
What becomes most important for all of us is the creative and wise connections we want to make. We want our grandchildren to feel connected to us, know that we love them and see them in special ways.
During our time with our families, whether in person or virtual, we can share a part of ourselves with them. We look to pick up on the child’s interests and build upon that. Perhaps we can help the child in their school work. Whatever it is, we inspire each other to be intentional and be present with our grandchildren in some shape or form.
What about you?
What community of grandmothers are you connected to on this “grand journey?” Groups of friends encourage support and make us better grandparents that build better relationships with our grandchildren.
What would you hope for 2021 with your grandchildren? If a community group of grandparents to go on the “Grand Journey” sounds like something that would be helpful to you, contact me and I will send you more information on how to get involved. We have a community Facebook group which we love to have you join.
2021 could be the year of your “Grand Journey” to build the best relationships ever with your grandchildren. Let’s walk it together.
This is the first newsletter from Nancy Booth Coaching in her new role as life coaching and story support for grandparents. In The Grand Journey, Nancy sees the desires of grandparents to make those close connections with grandchildren in creative and wise ways that extend into the future. If this is something that resonates with you, you’ll be receiving how-tos in writing your own story for your grandchildren, creative ideas to connect with them, and wise ways to build that important relationship through prayer and a growth mindset. Join the private Facebook group The Grand Journey and contact Nancy with any questions.