*In honor of Mother’s Day, Parentology is sharing stories from people who have women that hold a special place in their lives. Someone other than their mother. Someone they cherish and hold dear. Other Mothers.
When I think about childhood memories, there aren’t many that don’t include my grandmother. She was one of those people everyone loved. She was fun, smart and a killer cook. Most of all, she enjoyed life, no matter what was thrown at her.
My grandmother didn’t worry about anything. If she did, she never let on, at least to me. That’s what I admired most and found comforting about her. It also made me jealous. I wanted to possess those qualities, but never knew if I had the strength.
Even as a child, I was a self-proclaimed worrywart. I never understood how my grandmother could NOT worry about things. That seemed to be how I was wired, so I assumed everyone else was, too.
With a constant smile on her face and that reassuring voice I miss to this day, my grandmother would say, “Don’t worry, things will work out.” Whether it was a test I was worried about, or some mean girls at school, she was always right. Even if things hadn’t worked out the way I envisioned, things did fall into place.
Growing up, I always looked for her words of wisdom and unique ways of fixing things. She could fix anything… whether that meant calming my worries or “MacGyvering” my Ken doll (I called him Todd) when it somehow split apart.
I remember the day Todd went into surgery on grandmother’s kitchen table. He was propped up by cans of tomatoes while she worked her magic with electrical tape and wire she pulled from a junk drawer. After spending time in recovery on a plate, he was good as new. To this day, I still have that Ken doll. My daughters actually play with him now.
As an only grandchild, I was blessed to have a unique bond with her. We’d eating tater tots while watching “The Price is Right” on my days off from school. We’d play along and yell at the TV when the contestants made a wrong bid. During summer breaks, we spent a lot of time together. She introduced me to the soap opera “The Young & the Restless” (shhh…don’t tell mom), something I still DVR every day. I wish we could chat about the current storylines. I can only imagine what she’d say.
My grandmother also instilled in me her love of reading. I remember sitting on the porch with her, each of us reading books. She’d finish quicker and be on to the next book while I was still reading my first. I always thought she had some type of superpower. But, she just really loved to read. When I see my younger daughter breeze through books, I know my grandmother is smiling down.
To say my grandma was the best is an understatement. She always told me she’d live to be 100, even as she got older and knew her health was failing. She came pretty close when she died a few years ago at the age of 94.
Understanding now what it means to be an adult, I have even more respect for her positive outlook and carefree attitude. She taught me to enjoy life as much as I could because worrying doesn’t accomplish anything. It’s something I strive to achieve, but it’s still a work in progress.