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Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Are you ready to be a grandparent?

Pinky as a baby

On my afternoon walk yesterday I observed a strapping, young man with blonde hair and broad shoulders out on his run; the quintessential young Aussie male. He was accompanied by a massive, fearsome looking German Shepherd and as the young man came nearer he flashed me a handsome, white smile.

“Hi Mum!” the young man called out. Oh… it was my eighteen year old son, Padraic and our dog Borat. Yeah I know… get thee to Specsavers.

Loss of vision is just one of the things we have to put up with as we get older; old enough to be a grandmother actually.

Yesterday my twenty-three year old (single) son sent me a succinct text,

“Mum, I got a girl pregnant.”

I stared at the screen. Holding down the panic, I replied as neutrally as possible, mindful of previous regretful episodes when I have hysterically overreacted to issues.

“Thaddeus. What are you on about?” I calmly texted, then sat back waiting nervously for the lengthy five minutes until he replied.

What went through my head during those apprehensive five minutes while I pondered the possibilities of an uncertain future? It went something like this...

Shite! Am I ready for this? Gosh, who’d have picked the first to go would be Thaddeus? My sister Sam and I agreed long ago that 'Hagar the Lothario' would be the first to go forth and multiply.

Is Thaddeus okay? The message sounded strained. What if this leads Thaddeus down the black path of depression and he becomes suicidal, what with having to give up University and get a job to support the child? That would be terrible.

What is the potential mother of my grandchild like? Will we get on or will she reject our family? I wouldn’t blame her… we are a bit weird. 

What if they break up? When will I see my grandchild if the two of them don’t stay together? I’ve heard about horrible things like that happening. 

I’ll be extra supportive towards her. 

We can have quality time together before the baby’s born. We could become best friends. I can see us sharing lunches and morning teas and baby shopping together.
I love the girl already. She'll be like another daughter.

Is she a pretty girl? God forbid, I don’t want an ugly grandchild. Who am I kidding? I’ll love it no matter what it looks like. 

Maybe I could turn the treadmill room into a nursery for the baby so Scotto and I can babysit overnight. Imagine waking up in the morning to a little baby in the house again! 

Perhaps Thaddeus will want to move back in? Oh, I don't like the idea of that. I'll have to think about that later on.

Will it be a boy or a girl? I think I’d prefer a granddaughter. Then I can buy pink, baby dresses and dolls and pretty things. But then I’d love a little Grandson too.

Will Thaddeus be a good father? He’s had two excellent role models with his father and step-father so there’s no reason he won’t. 

Will I be a good grandmother? 

Yes! Oh yes I will! I’ll spoil it rotten and give it a lot of love… it will be like a second chance at parenthood and…

My thoughts were interrupted by an incoming text from Thaddeus, and my hands were shaking as I picked up the phone.

“I couldn’t be bothered coming up with an elaborate April Fool’s joke.” he wrote.

Well thank the Lord for that. I’m far too young and nowhere near ready to be a Granny anyway. 

Read 'Pinky's Guide to How You Know You're Getting Old'