Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Grandparents and Grandchildren…

There is a unique bond between grandparents and grandchildren.

Something which I will probably never understand in entirety (may be till I become one myself), Something which defies logic, Something which can never be explained, Something which never ceases to surprise, amaze and shock me, Something which brings about changes in people that they almost turn into something else (You sometimes wonder if you ever knew them)….

• I have never heard my father singing in my entire life (Maybe he did when I was a baby, and I don’t remember). And when he became a grandfather, I heard him hum and sing a zillion songs, Not even songs – They were lullabies – So meaningful, So musical and always got the babies to sleep. I don’t know from where he learnt them. I was pleasantly surprised :)

• My mother made pretty dresses for N and D with her wedding sari. I was shocked! I don’t think she has actually stitched such stuff for anyone for several years. And in spite of everything, she found the time to stitch these dresses

• VT who has never held a single baby in his entire life (Even his own children - At least not until they were 1)  has played, sung and carried N every day for almost a month – when she was a new born baby

• SPK who has probably never really bought (out of his own interest) any real gift for anyone in his entire life (including himself, his wife, kids or anyone else) bought a white just-so-pretty-and-perfect frock for N. And the best part is, he bought trendy matching accessories along with it. And the accessories complemented the dress so beautifully – I was both shocked and pleasantly surprised!!

• IK who has probably not knitted for several years made hand-made sweaters and frocks for N. Each one was so beautiful – In color, form and style

• From time immemorial, it has been V’s habit to read the paper every morning (Yes! The one in print and paper). If anyone in his house touches the paper before he does, they are in for a good morning doze. And since he became a grandfather, his grandson wakes up every morning, runs to the door, gets the paper and tears it up (It gives K immense happiness to tear up the newspaper to bits). V says nothing and I mean nothing!!! – In fact, many times everyone has caught him enjoying the act and if anyone looks at him, he gives a sheepish grin. And it’s not a once in a way occurrence – It’s a daily ritual. And V actually justifies his grandson’s daily act with some weird proprietary logic. Well whatever! As long as peace prevails within the four walls, no one really cares about the state of the newspaper

• Dr GG told me that he wonders if he even has an identity at home. All decisions are made by his parents after consultation with his daughters He told me one day that he is yet to find a suitable place, a voice and standing in his house. And if his parents are out and call him, they don’t ever say “Hello. How are you?”. The first thing they ask is “How are the grandkids?

• Dr S told me that his mom is an arthritis patient with severe knee & joint pains; and could barely walk. Ever since he came back to India from London, he has hardly heard his mom ever mention about pain in her knees. She spends a great part of her daily time actively playing with the grand kids. He has to sometimes check with her on aches and pains. And many times she simply dismisses him!!!

• S’s father is one the really strict(esssssssst) people I know – Someone I have known for more than two decades and have heard him discipline his kids all through their childhood and adult life. After a point, it irritated and annoyed everyone in his family. And today, he is a grandfather. Surprisingly now, he has different rules as far as his grandchildren are concerned – No one can discipline / shout at any of them (At least in front of him). If anyone raises their voice, they know what they will get from him!!! And again his family is irritated and annoyed :)

And now that I am a mother,
Am aware of things which I have probably never observed in my life
Appreciate things which I always took for granted in life
Care about things which I never cared about
Worry about things which I never used to worry about
Do things which I have never done in my life..

So then, I guess a grandparent must go through some unique emotions of their own - when they see and spend time with their grandchildren.

And many times
They seem to forget all the mental stress
They seem to forget all the financial woes
They seem to forget all the drudgery of old-age
They seem to forget all the monotony of daily life
They seem to forget all the diseases, physical aches, pains and ailments

Just to share a moment of pure unadulterated joy with their grandchildren
Only for a baby coo
Only for a baby hug
Only for a baby kiss
Only for a baby’s smile
Only to listen to a baby tale
Only to witness a baby adorn a new dress
Only to see a baby relish the food they cook
Only to view a baby wear the dress they stitched, they knitted with their old weary hands

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