Happy Birthday Sweet Sixteen


Dear Grandparents, 

Whoa is me! My oldest grandchild is celebrating her 16th birthday! This is disturbing because grandchildren are not supposed to age! They are supposed to be … forever young!

 In disbelief, I walk around saying, “I can’t believe Megan is 16.” But, in all seriousness, I believe my granddaughter’s 16th birthday is rather a melancholy event for me because I just cannot accept the fact that she is actually aging. (Or perhaps, I can’t accept the fact that I am aging. I just don’t know.) 

Nonetheless, I suppose this Saturday I will undoubtedly believe it when I attend her huge bonfire-birthday-party accompanied by a gaggle of giddy teens running amok. But, rest your mind; there will be lots and lots and lots of chaperones!

Well, accepting the thought of my grandbaby crossing over into the abyss of adulthood requires drastic psychological measures on my behalf. Therefore, as an official member of the Society of Ever-doting Grandparents, I propose to our Maker that He please assist in my compliance by considering the following very modest amendments in the course of our grandchildren’s lives: 

        1.      A grandchild should never be too old to realize that her parents and grandparents are not the smartest people in the whole-wide-world.

       2.      A grandchild should never be old enough to think there is nothing to do at Grandma’s house.

         3.     A grandchild should never be old enough to think she shouldn’t have to ride in the back seat.

         4.      A grandchild should never become old enough to legally get into a motor vehicle and crank the engine … and go!

         5.      A grandchild should never grow old enough to seriously think that a member of the opposite sex is genuinely a good person with good intentions and good thoughts!

          6.      A grandchild should never be old enough to teach me something as simple as the Pythagorean Theorem (or teach me whether or not it should be capitalized).

           7.     A grandchild should never be old enough to competently play classical canons on the keyboard.

           8.    A grandchild should never reach the age where she gives me the eye. You know “the eye”: She sweetly looks at me like she just figured out that I am actually old.  Like, you know, like, OMG, she just figured out I’m like, actually a grandma … like … like all other grandmas!

           9.    A grandchild should never be old enough to have a birthday that requires so many candles that we are seriously considering using two big-number-candles instead of the old-fashioned system of one candle for each year.

        10.    A grandchild should never reach the age where she foregoes the opportunity to engage in silly play with her siblings because of what someone else might think.

         11.    A grandchild should never be old enough to consider The Simpsons as political wit.

          12.    A grandchild should never be old enough to think The Wizard of Oz, The Ten Commandments, or the Disney Classics are boring.

          13.    A grandchild should never be old enough to say (as she pauses mid-sentence), “I am looking for a far better word before I speak ….” Really? Do teenagers think about what they say before they say it?

         14.    A grandchild should never be old enough to ask about death.

         15.    A grandchild should never be old enough to worry about war.

         16.    A grandchild should never be old enough to think that she will one day want, more than anything else in the whole-wide-world, to leave her home and find happiness with someone else.

Well, grandparents, I know you will agree with me and will support my proposals. Why, you probably know of some great little gems that I have overlooked. Feel free to add to my list. Feel free to modify and improve!

Take care, grandparents. Tell your grands you love them everyday because before you know it, they will sprout wings, take flight, and flee the nest.  And, you will find yourself helplessly standing by—And yet, so proud.

From the bright side of grandparenting, I bid you adieu,

Curly Grandma

Who is Curly Grandma? She is a real grandma with seven grandchildren.  Her name comes from her first grandchild, Megan, who learned to distinguish her two grannies with adjectives (hence the Curly). Visit Curly Grandma at her website www.curlygrandma.com and learn all about writing letters to grandchildren. On her site, get lots of information and free stationery. And you can even buy her book Curly Grandma’s Letters: Writing to Kids and Capturing Your Autobiography (Tate Publishing; available on Amazon.com). This blog and illustrations are not to be copied or reproduced without permission from Anita Bryce.


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