Real Talk

This is Why We Love Grandparents

To all the grandparents, thank you for everything.

If you grew up with grandparents, you’d know just how awesome having grandparents is. And now that we’re parents ourselves, it feels like our hearts have grown threefold. They’ve taught us so much—from important life lessons to being all-around good people—which helped mold us into the adults and parents we are today. With Grandparents Day coming up in the next few days, we thought we’d give a shoutout to the folks who’ve helped raise us—whether in person or in spirit—and show them how much they mean to us.

Growing up with Granny

I was lucky enough to have grown up with my Granny. She was an empowered woman who insisted on driving herself everywhere (even when she was sick) and working till her mid 70’s. She instilled in me a sense of independence and confidence that I could do anything I put my mind to. Whenever I was feeling down, I knew that I could count on my Granny for solid advice, a girly movie sesh, and a lunch date.

Granny and her girls. Photography: Jana Blanco

She was so darn stubborn, a trait that she has passed onto the women in our family. She showed me that you don’t always have to go with the flow, that if we needed to stick to our guns, we should — but of course, only to a certain extent. She showed me that it was important for women to have their own lives apart from their families and household, which is why I continue to work hard and pursue a career in publishing. She also taught me the perks of letting loose, singing to music at the top of our lungs while driving in her car and having a sense of humor. I can still remember her laughter every now and then—she laughed with such gusto.

My siblings and I loved her so much. We’d spend afternoons at her house, lazing on her bed and just talking about everything and nothing, after indulging in a Sunday lunch that included all our favorites. Sometimes, she’d treat us to mani-pedis or a massage by her suki. She loved to go out, and she’d take us anywhere we wanted—the mall, an amusement park, Pancake House—even if our mom was already rolling her eyes because she knew her saying no would mean nothing. Yes, she spoilt us rotten, but isn’t that what grandparents are supposed to do?

When parents become grandparents

Through both my births, my mom was there at my side to welcome my boys. She gave me her (much smaller) hand to hold while I gripped it with all my might as I went through labor. But it didn’t end there— I can safely say she was there for practically everything—my sons’ first steps, solid food adventures and even to watch my firstborn while I delivered my second. I could count on her to always be around, even if I lived in another country. She would visit as often as she could and video call myself and the kids several times a week. My kids grew up having a Mimi, and now that we’re down the street, it has been all kinds of amazing.

Getting some kisses in! Photography: Jana Blanco

Now that I have kids of my own, I see the bond my parents have with my sons and it warms my heart. I love that my kids can now see her whenever they want, although it makes me jealous that sometimes they seem to like them more than me (especially when it’s time to say goodbye). Sure, they might not always agree with your “new-agey” parenting methods, but they mean well. My kids are making memories the same way I did with my own Granny and I am grateful.

Happy Grandparents Day!

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