I have to be honest: I didn’t see this coming. In the first place, I never gave much thought to what my life would be like when I became, shall we say, “a woman of a certain age.” Like most young people, I secretly believed aging was something that happened only to other people, but that I would maintain my youthful vigor right up to the day I died. (Even if I lived to be 100.)
Yet slowly but surely, my body began to succumb to the ravages of time. I still remember the morning I woke up and found I couldn’t read the newspaper because the print was suddenly fuzzy. I blinked repeatedly and even put in eye drops, but nothing helped. It took the better part of the day before I realized the time had come for reading glasses. And the first time I noticed that my neckline was both sagging and full of wrinkles, I almost threw away my make-up mirror. The only thing that stopped me was the knowledge that I couldn’t safely apply my mascara without it.
But what really surprises me about reaching the ripe old age of 64 is the change in my behavior. And this change can’t be blamed solely on my age. I know for a fact that there are precisely three reasons why I am now doing and saying things I never thought I’d say or do, and those reasons are my three grandchildren.
To be honest, I didn’t give becoming a grandparent any more thought than I gave any other aspect of aging. When I first heard that my daughter was going to have a baby, I was thrilled, but I didn’t really believe that becoming a grandparent would change me very much. And yet it did.
From the first time I laid eyes on my new grandson, I was smitten. That’s only natural. But the problem was that overnight, I turned into the typical obnoxious new grandparent. I had tons of photos of my grandson, and I shared them with everyone who crossed my path. How could they not want to see the most adorable child in the history of the world?
So imagine my surprise when grandchild number two came along. Not only was she equally adorable, but she was my first granddaughter! That had to be shared as well. And not just by photos. By the time I became a grandparent to two adorable children, I was also sending friends, family, and old schoolmates videos of them. Regularly and relentlessly.
By the time the third grandchild was born (another boy), I was a hopeless case. I talk about my grandchildren, I write about my grandchildren, I share photos and videos of my grandchildren with all and sundry, etc. In short, I’m a typical grandparent who is hopelessly in love with the three little people who gave her that title. And yes, it’s a sign of my age. But unlike those others, it’s a sign I happily embrace…..