Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Winging This Grandma Thing

So I picked her up from her day of shadowing a 6th grader at her new school. This isn’t just any school. It is the Arts School, a district magnet school.

The night before my daughter called asking me to talk to my granddaughter. She was in tears at 11pm worrying about the separation from her friends who were going to attend the local middle school. Sobs greeted me on the other end of the line.

“Honey, there isn’t anything that can’t be undone if you don’t like it,” I said, just wondering if I was saying the correct thing. “You are a brave girl. There is nothing to worry about.” Yeah, sure. I would have been terrified at her age.

“Can you tell me what you are afraid of, Honey?” I asked.

A sob was sucked in, “My friends. I won’t be able to see my friends.”
After we finished our conversation, or maybe after I finished talking and she finished listening, I had a stomach ache. All of my insecurities at that age whapped me between the eyes making me want to go pick her up and flee the entire school scene.

I didn’t like school when I was a kid. Shyness and lack of confidence continually tried to defeat me from beginning to end. Yet, I did survive despite my lacking of support from home. I didn’t have a grandma call. I didn’t have a grandma to listen to me when my parents did not. I didn’t have a grandma to cheer me on and to wipe my tears.

I pulled into the school parking lot nervous as to what would greet me at the counseling office where I was to pick her up. Firmly I planted a big smile on my face and entered the doors of potential doom with confidence and determination to support this dear child in whatever way was needed of me.

“So how did it go?” I asked. The dialogue was one-sided for most of the drive home. One class had a teacher missing and sub who didn’t teach much. Another had a dance teacher in a meeting and the kids in limbo. She liked art class where she actually got to draw. Lunch was great as she got to sit in the hall and eat with the other kids.

“Are you sure you want to go here?” I asked.

Her best reply appeared on Facebook: ‘I did have a great day it was so much fun I wish there was no such thing a summer... sorta.’

Ah, this Grammy thing seems to be working pretty well.

1 comment:

  1. What a gift you are to each other! Sometimes I think it's all about acceptance and a sense of belonging at any age.