08/21/2012 21:32

Relax no more, Relinquish control and Resilience personified

My granddaughter which I will refer to as "S" entered my domain at a time when I was in transition from overworked and underpaid to not quite sure what to do with the rest of my life.  I really liked the fact that I did not have to make a decision about the events of my day and could meander around a market for hours or talk on the phone to a distant family member until we had little more to say. I felt in control of my own time for the first time ever and could fulfill a task in TV slow motion with no deadlines to fill or a countdown of minutes to completion.   I was beginning to understand the verb, "to relax" which most would say I rarely practiced.  That came to such a screeching halt, I barely remember the jolt from the crash.  Relaxation is the antonym of raising a child ;as is the loud of quiet and the messy of neat.  I am sure that is why child birth is usually impossible after 50 because the energy necessary to keep up is depleted by this age.  A baby is about movement, emotional roller coasters and noise. My grandaughter is all about verbs like react, wail, laugh, run, scream, yell, hug, touch and play, but not about relaxing.  Control of one's time, possessions and events must also be relinquished with the white flag of surrender to the persistent and inevitable time table of a baby and the curiosity of wandering hands.  Routine, schedules, and structure are necessary for a healthy well being, so they say.  S did not follow any routine for her first nine months so I was determined to implement some type of predictability from then on. My stuff has become a bastion of sight and sound for her.  She is intrigued by the colors, the shapes and the sizes.  Everything is a surface to feel and nothing is the sole property of the owner.  S does not understand "mine" from my point of view, only from hers as she stated quite fanatically and way too often.  Finally but as  important is the need for resilience.  Raising a child is not for the weak of heart, mind or body.  The demands are countless and the supply is usually limited.  Resilience was instilled within the framework of my personality at a very young age, but it has been personifed with the nuturing of S.  When I want to sit, she wants to crawl or walk, when I want to eat, she needs a diaper change, and when I ache from my teeth downward, she wants to be rocked.  The three R's of re-parenting as a grandparent are supposedly why so many react to my news of motherhood by stating  "Oh, it will keep you young".  That or it will just be exhausting and I will be glowing from the sweat on my brow.....





Garden Ridge, Texas