"Grandma! Where are you when I need you?!"
Been thinking about my grandma lately. I had two and I think of both.
I only had one grandpa, and I do think of him, but not in the same manner as I think of the old women in my young life...now that I am old, not having died young.
Always thought I would die young.
Didn't die young.
Granny was my dad's mom, and Grandma was my mom's mom.
Neither one was the warm-fuzzied kind of woman!
They were very different from each other, but they shared a common trait: they weren't into children all that much.
It was from these women ......and my sister....(and to some extent my mom) I learned that not all women are into children all that much.
And I learned that is ok and doesn't make a woman deficient at some core level.
I myself love children...never met a child I did not love and find fascinating....and I could be happy managing an orphanage and writing about and for children. I am full of warm fuzzies.
But I learned from my grandmothers that not all women would be happy in such a role, and for them it would be a sentence, not a destiny.
And that is ok.
Society wants all women to be into children "by nature", but that is just plain missing the boat!
I come from a family of several sweet men
and many fierce women,
so I learned that society's idea about the role of women...and the role of men.....is not correct.
It is a pretty idea, but not correct.
It is good for society, but that doesn't mean it is natural.
It functions well for society, but that does not make it natural once the jungle is left behind.
The roles, "nature fitted", are actually about dictating what you are and ensuring you do your bit for society, and there is great pressure to get you to buy off on your "nature fitted" role.
Heck, my dad wouldn't even let me chew gum!
"A chewing girl and a crowing hen, all come to a very bad end", he loved to say.
I chewed on.
Behind his back, of course.
Both my grandmothers were forced, more or less, into the role of abundant motherhood.
One grandma jumped the tracks completely and reappeared only when the child-rearing was done.by abundantmama.com
. The other was a self-directed slave with a sad tired expression.
How I wish I had interviewed them when I was young and had the chance.
How I wish I had even listened to them!
How I wish either had left behind some written words from their old age.
Where are my grandmothers when I need them now that I am old!
Whatever were THEY thinking as they aged?
Granny (the track jumper) lived to be 104 and Grandma lived to be 79.
Now there's a clue as to what jumping-the-tracks will do for life expectancy!
Also, "the good die young" takes on more meaning.
Perhaps old age is a sentence and we are in prison?
Nah! I don't believe that!
I just wish the thought hadn't sprung to mind.
My grandma who "jumped the tracks" was maligned behind her back all the time, but, just like she wasn't into kids all that much, she wasn't into gossip all that much either. She did as she pleased! Having shown up, as she had said she would, when all the kids were grown, she was a constant reminder that she was a target fit for darts.
Her daughters-in-law all hated her because their husbands loved her dearly, perhaps neurotically, and refused to malign her!
Even before I was old enough to understand, I admired her for doing as she pleased.
That childish characteristic in me has lasted even into my old age.
I cannot help it. I admire people who do as they please, let the consequence follow.
I disrespect them if they whine about the consequences....but I have noticed many self-directed people do not whine about consequences. They are too busy directing and redirecting their lives.
Have I mentioned I do as I please?
The biggest consequence for me is: this "non-society-approved" characteristic in me has leaked into all my children, who do as they please!
I must not whine.
Missing Grandma and Granny who would surely cheer me on,