What My Granddaughter Will Get from My Grandmothers

Memories of my grandmothers intercept thoughts of my granddaughter who is expected to arrive within a few days. Her brother is my first grandchild but she will be my first granddaughter (both children of my son), making it easy for each of them to be a favorite. But why do memories of my grandmothers overwhelm me this time more than the last time? Genetic relatedness, perhaps?

A paternal granddaughter ends up getting an X chromosome that is almost exactly the same as her grandmother's. This lets her share a little extra DNA with that grandmother.

— Julie Granka, Stanford University*

The Grandma

By António José Patrício (1827-1858)
By António José Patrício (1827-1858) | Source

Remembering My Grandmothers

Before I grasped the concept of God, my maternal grandmother was my only refuge and strength, my very present help in time of trouble. When I needed her, she was always there with a comforting perspective and a reminder of a walk we would soon enjoy together.

My paternal grandmother was a different image of God with a standing order for me to ask and receive, seek and find, knock and watch the door open. She provided for my needs and I remember her saying, “Even if I don’t have it, I’ll get it for you.”

Now that their granddaughter (yours truly) is awaiting her granddaughter, some features of their grandparenting deserve to be remembered.


Passing It On

In my mind, I am cradling the young one and praying that as a credit to my grandmothers’ influence, she will sense through me:

  1. The vision of womanhood;
  2. The sound of love;
  3. The fragrance of family;
  4. The flavor of wisdom;
  5. The touch of heaven.


Grandmother with Granddaughter

By Aleksander Mroczkowski (Polish painter 1850-1927)
By Aleksander Mroczkowski (Polish painter 1850-1927) | Source

(1) The Vision of Womanhood

My granddaughter will be the most accepting of my present self-image since she has no reference to who I was at any other period of my life.

The vision of womanhood I present to her will be branded with characteristics I saw in my grandmothers, imitated in my own life, and plan to contribute to hers. Among other features:

  • Self-worth as an individual and as a female;
  • Positive, helping attitude toward other females, consistent with my interaction with her mother and other women in our space;
  • Respect for self and others evidenced by speech, dress and conduct.

I want my granddaughter to be glad that she’s a girl; but I want her to determine her career path according to her passion and potential, rather than her gender. Healthy, productive womanhood will just be the foundation on which she grows into the best achiever she can be.


(2) The Sound of Love

My mother and I lived with her mother, and I can still hear my grandmother praying that her granddaughters become “corner stones, polished after the similitude of a palace.” It is a quote from Psalm 144 in the King James Version, the only one we had back then.

It was not just the words (because I didn’t understand them). It was the earnestness and the sense of something extraordinary which sounded like love. I wanted to deserve that love and whenever she praised me or defended me, I renewed my commitment to make her proud.

Thanks to modern technology, distance will have no bearing on when and how often my granddaughter hears my voice. She will hear me call her name; sing a song; tell a story, and as a tribute to my grandmother’s memory, pray a prayer. Whichever way I choose, I want my words to speak love and affirmation. I will also interpret her baby sounds and later her questions as proof of the love that connects us.


(3) The Fragrance of Family

Two strangers may bond quickly and discover afterwards that they are biologically related. When that happens some say (at least, in the Caribbean they do) that they “smell the blood,” suggesting that the blood of relatives have a similar scent. If that were true, it might account for special bonding between grandbabies and grandparents.

Grandparents and grandkids profoundly affect one another – just because they exist! This bond is probably the most simple form of love that exists.**

— Arthur Kornhaber, M.D., The Foundation for Grandparenting.

The Combing of Grandaughter

By Georgios Jakobides (1853-1932)
By Georgios Jakobides (1853-1932) | Source

Regardless of the competition and jealousy which may develop among siblings and cousins, grandmothers usually remain above the conflict. They dispense love fairly regardless of birth order or any other sequence. That too, I learned from my grandmothers. Despite my birth order on their lists, my security and self-worth were most healthy in their presence.

Grandmothers possess the greatest scent of family because:

  • They are the easiest explainable link between aunts, uncles and cousins.
  • They satisfy every child’s need for love;
  • They speak all the love languages: affirmation, hugs, gifts, attention and assistance.

May my granddaughter always sense the fragrance of favor, faith and everything else family in my company.


Grandmother is the Best

By Adolf Humborg (1847-1921)
By Adolf Humborg (1847-1921) | Source

(4) The Flavor of Wisdom

You do not really understand something unless you can explain it to your grandmother. – Proverb

In other words, there is no way the granddaughter can tell the story truthfully without it making sense to Grandma. If Grandma does not understand it, her first concern is to help the granddaughter sort out the facts – especially when it comes to the facts of life. Grandmother’s wisdom in loving, listening, supporting and guiding comes from various sources:

  • Lessons learned from experiences of naïvety and folly;
  • Hands on training in parenting the granddaughter’s parent;
  • Examples from her own parents and grandparents;
  • Continuing- education efforts to master the art of grandparenting.

My granddaughter may not understand wisdom at the start, but when she does, I want to be an example of that virtue. It always thrills me when folks mention my grandmother’s wisdom. My aim is to establish a girl-friendly relationship in which my granddaughter feels comfortable to be herself, cry, laugh, jump or cuddle with the assurance that my response will be appropriate.


Grandmother Portrait Poll

Which of the four grandmother portraits on this page best reminds you of your grandmother? Feel free to say why in the comments.

  • The Grandma ( Patrício)
  • Grandmother with Granddaughter (Mroczkowsk)
  • The Combing of Granddaughter (Jakobides)
  • Grandmother is Best (Humborg)
See results without voting

(5) The Touch of Heaven

I remember my paternal grandmother sitting me up on her lap when everyone else thought I was too grown for that. It was a touch of heaven, having my secret need supplied without having to request it.

I shall attempt to touch my granddaughter with more than my hands--with the gleam in my eye expressing awe of being in her presence, with laughter and smiles to evoke her joy, with heartfelt interest revealing genuine love and care.

I intend to deliver the touch of heaven in my hugs, every chance I get.


References

*Granka, Julie: The Tech Museum of Innovation, Relatedness (11/02/2015)

**Parenthood: The Grandparent-Grandchild Bond (Copyright 2015 - Dominion Enterprises)

© 2015 Dora Isaac Weithers

More by this Author


Comments 51 comments

Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 19 months ago from southern USA

Oh my, MsDora, this is an extraordinary and beautiful testament to what it means to be a grandmother and the special bond between a grandmother and granddaughter.

Whoever came up with "Grand" when referring to a "Grandparent", especially a "Grandmother" knew that joy. I know I know exactly of that special bond between my granddaughters/son and me. It is truly grand. I believe there is that blood bond they can smell which they know is love.

That one photo remind me of when I hold my grandchildren, even when they are now getting a bit too big. They just love it and I stroke their hair and sing them songs. We grandmothers know that there is something Grand about the grandchildren.

You are going to bless your granddaughter and she you. We love our children, but there is just something grand about the grandchildren.

Up ++++ tweeting, pinning, G+ and sharing

God bless you and yours always


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Faith, you are such a joyful grandmother; I can just imagine how your grandchildren long for your company. Thanks for sharing your precious sentiments.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 19 months ago from Queensland Australia

Beautiful hub MsDora. I pray that you have a wonderful relationship with your new/first granddaughter. Thank you for sharing.


word55 profile image

word55 19 months ago from Chicago

Hi MsDora, a beautiful granddaughter is really worth looking forward to seeing. I am so happy for you. That is so sweet of her to come see you. I'm sure that Gabriel is coming too. What is her name?


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 19 months ago from Central Florida

Dora, this is beautiful. Contemplating what you plan to offer your granddaughter is a true testament of love and wanting to be a huge part of her life. I have not yet had the pleasure of being a grandmother. Hopefully, one day....


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Thanks for your prayer, Jodah. I am looking forward to my new gift.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Word, thanks for sharing my joy. My new granddaughter is expected to arrive as in expected to be born (smile). Hopefully, she and her brother will visit me in the Caribbean one day.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Shauna, you'll enjoy being a grandmother whenever it happens. It's been 2 years since I became a grandmother and I don't think the excitement wears off. Thanks for your kind sentiment.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 19 months ago from Shelton

I enjoy reading your hubs Msdora because you do have calming words.. no matter the subject bless you dear one :)


billybuc profile image

billybuc 19 months ago from Olympia, WA

I will just echo what others have said. This really is beautiful. I love that you are passing on lessons learned...tradition and family love..so important in today's world. Bravo my friend.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Frank, thanks for your kind support. Perhaps I am creating the calm I need. I accept your blessing!


Thelma Alberts profile image

Thelma Alberts 19 months ago from Germany

What a beautiful calming hub! It reminded me of my own grandmother who was always there for me as a kid. Enjoy your life as a grandmother, I wish I will be in the future. Thanks for sharing.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Bill, you know the blessing that family is! Thanks for your affirmation and encouragement.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Thelma, glad to stir up some good memories of your grandmother. Thanks for your kind comment and I pray with you that you will experience grandparenting.


Edward J. Palumbo profile image

Edward J. Palumbo 19 months ago from Tualatin, OR

My maternal grandparents emigrated from Spain before World War I, and lived nearby. My grandfather was a stoic man with a remarkable work ethic, but my grandmother's example was one of consistent caring, warmth, humor and faith. Their life had not been easy but, with their discipline (Grandpa) and consistent love (Grandma), they raised four children to productive adulthood on the lower East Side of Manhattan during challenging times of Prohibition and the Great Depression, and they would prove an example for me. My grandmother was also a model of quiet courage, resilience and patience. It is my hope, when I cross the river, that my grandmother's face will be among the first I see.


denise.w.anderson profile image

denise.w.anderson 19 months ago from Bismarck, North Dakota

I remember my grandmother's soft silver-white curly hair. She was a dear woman, and I loved being near her. She died when I was in my late teens, and life was never the same! I used to love going to her home and hugging her. She had a smell about her that made me think of the lilacs and flowers I used to love in her yard. Thanks for the fond memories!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Edward, thanks for sharing your beautiful memories of your grandparents. What an excellent tribute!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Denise, I am impressed that you remember your grandmother's smell. Glad that you enjoy reminiscing about her.


Perspycacious profile image

Perspycacious 19 months ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

Ejoyed, even if I myself am a grandfather!

First painting was my choice because the love, trust, and respect of the children has already been won by events of their interactions in the past.

I hope that one day your granddaughter will read this, or better still that you will read it to her one day and record it on something she can listen to any time she chooses to.


AliciaC profile image

AliciaC 19 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

Congratulations on the upcoming birth of your granddaughter! This is a beautiful hub about grandmothers which has wonderful illustrations.


torrilynn profile image

torrilynn 19 months ago

this was a great testament indeed to your grandmother. Best of wishes. Voted up.


techygran profile image

techygran 19 months ago from Vancouver Island, Canada

MsDora, this is very beautiful! Congratulations on this new chapter in your life as a Grandma-- I know you will enjoy and be enjoyed and a blessing! I was very interested to read that initial quotation: " A paternal granddaughter ends up getting an X chromosome that is almost exactly the same as her grandmother's. This lets her share a little extra DNA with that grandmother.

— Julie Granka, Stanford University*

because I am a paternal grandmother to two wonderful little granddaughters who delight me to no end. Thank you! ~Cynthia


manatita44 profile image

manatita44 19 months ago from london

Very nice article about Grandmothers. I do not know if life allows them to be as they used to be. Still, there is much love about and many do well. Excellent Hub.


Ericdierker profile image

Ericdierker 19 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

I enjoyed this very much. We are visiting my wife's homeland and the joy of seeing my son with his grandmother is a special joy indeed. Thank you.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Perspycacious, your preference of portraits is the same as mine and I agree with your explanation. Thanks also for your suggestion about reading this to my granddaughter. I appreciate you!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Thanks, Alicia. Grandmothers, and now grandchildren are really special to me.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Thanks, Cynthia. I can imagine how much you enjoy those granddaughters. I was so happy to find that fact, I've told just about everyone I talked to since then. The link in the references also has some good information.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Manatita, by the grace of God some of us are making the effort to be what grandmothers are designed to be. Thanks for your observation and good wishes.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

So there you are, Eric! Happy for you and your family, especially the grandparents who are delighted to have their grandson within arms' length. Precious memories to share!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Torrilynn, skipping over you was not intentional. I jumped to your profile page, and forgot what I was doing by the time I came back. Thanks for your kind comment and good wishes!


stricktlydating profile image

stricktlydating 19 months ago from Australia

Beautiful.


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 19 months ago from USA

Congratulations on your new granddaughter. May you enjoy each other for many years. I particularly loved your sentiment, "I want my granddaughter to be glad that she’s a girl; but I want her to determine her career path according to her passion and potential, rather than her gender." My mother has been an important influence in my daughter's life, as we intentionally moved from out-of-state to a mile from their home so that we could reside close to them. Grandmothers teach so much about what it is to be nurturing and vibrant and powerful in a family.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Thanks, stricktlydating. The topic of grandmothers is surely beautiful.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Folurish, that's a blessing for your daughter to live so closely to her grandmother. I would like that! Thank you for sharing.


annart profile image

annart 19 months ago from SW England

What a wonderful hub you've written here and I agree with you totally. I'm very close to my oldest granddaughter, 14; the 4 year old and I have great fun together and she's full of cuddles. The youngest is only a few weeks old but I spent much of her first week with her so feel that we have bonded too. What a joy they all are, each in their own special way. They are my daughter's daughters (I have no sons).

We're away at the moment but I'm longing to see them again next week.

I too want to pass on the values I hold dear, to teach them as much as possible of what I've learnt in life, in order for them to maybe avoid some of the pitfalls and to appreciate the wonders of this world.

Up ++ and shared.

Ann


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Wow, Ann. You've got them in various age groups, so I know you enjoy a variety of fun! Thanks for sharing your joy Blessings on all of us grandmothers!


tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 19 months ago from New York

How lucky your granddaughter will be to have a loving and knowledgeable grandmother like you. You have so much to offer her and know what and how to share with her.

I was intrigued by your "smell of blood" comment. How true, we always have a way of knowing our own.

This is a beautiful hub Dora. You have written it lovingly and the future looks bright for you and your new granddaughter. Congratulations on this wonderful hub and your new granddaughter.

Voted all but funny.


annart profile image

annart 19 months ago from SW England

Yes, I'm lucky. I also have two grandsons (my older daughter's sons) and like to think I can pass on some fun and wisdom to them too. They're all so special, boys and girls.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Thank you, Mary. Your comment is so encouraging and enjoyable. I appreciate you.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Ann, your boys and girls have a special grandmother. Blessings on you all! Happy Mothers Day!


annart profile image

annart 19 months ago from SW England

Thanks, Dora, you too. Our Mothers' Day was back in March; we seem to be the only ones who have it earlier!


Romeos Quill profile image

Romeos Quill 19 months ago from Lincolnshire, England

A lovely Hub MsDora and congratulations on your new arrival. The new child couldn't have a better role model for her formative years.

Pleased to share and pin;

Happy Mother's Day.

R.Q.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Thanks, Romeos, for your Mothers Day greeting. I've waited and waited for these little angels to enter my life, so I pray that I fulfill whatever is expected of me as a granmother. Thanks for your kind words as well.


Supuni Fernando profile image

Supuni Fernando 19 months ago from Colombo, Sri Lanka

I found this really emotional since I have two grandmothers: one is 92 years old and the other is 96. I look a lot like my grandma from my father's side and I've noticed I have the same traits as her. I am really proud of her since she was a teacher and had many students.

I adore all the pictures you have added into the article, and I'd say the first one resembles my grandma the best :)

This is an interesting article and I hope you had a wonderful Mother's Day.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Thanks, Supuni. My day was good. So you're an example of the special bond between granddaughter and paternal grandmother. So happy for you that you could enjoy that special relationship. Thanks for your interesting feedback.


Supuni Fernando profile image

Supuni Fernando 19 months ago from Colombo, Sri Lanka

Yes indeed I am, I was described a close lookalike to my paternal grandma so I could agree with the chromosome theory. And congratulations on the granddaughter. Best wishes for the mother and the expecting baby.


lifegate profile image

lifegate 19 months ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

I think you just about covered it all here, Dora. You packed so much wisdom for the future into your lesson, and I do believe that much of what you shared applies to men as well as women. Thank you for sharing it with us just as you will with your blessed granddaughter.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Thank you, Lifegate, Of course, grandparenting is just as special for grandfathers.


radhikasree profile image

radhikasree 18 months ago from Mumbai,India

Your hub reminded me of my grand mothers with whom I spent few lovely days. Nice to read about your love towards them.

Voted up, beautiful and interesting.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 18 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Radhikasree, thanks for your feedback. Glad you enjoyed the article and the memories of your grandmothers


rdsparrowriter profile image

rdsparrowriter 12 months ago

Beautiful thoughts :) You are blessed lady to have and to hold grand children :) I had two grandmas and a great grand ma when I was small. All have gone to be with the Lord. I still remember some of the things they have taught me :) Take care :)

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    Click to Rate This Article
    working