Children don’t come to live with their grandparents or relatives because everything is going great. The transition can be tough for the new family. As a grand“Parent” guardian of my grandson, I’ve written previously about the sad stuff, the tough stuff, and there’s a lot of it. It’s easy to get sucked into the negative, rehashing the entire past, the guilt, the anger, and projecting into an ugly future.
Today is the last day of National Adoption Month. It is a month I celebrate, not as a Grandfamily caregiver, but as an adoptee. Once in my life I was projected into an ugly future. When my birth mother became pregnant she was only 16 years old. She was pregnant and 16 years old. There were many who predicted that her baby had no future. There were whispers how that baby was a mistake. But I know, deeply, personally, there are no mistakes. There is no good. There is no bad. There just is. It is us who label circumstances, people, events, good or bad. We do so incorrectly. Without my birth mother’s “indiscretion” at 16 years old I would not exist. My children would not exist. My grandson would not exist. This reality has made me the humanitarian I am today. It has made me a believer in the good in everyone. It has allowed me to be grateful for every moment.
I’ve learned to be grateful, thankful for the moments I feel frustrated, sad, ashamed, confused, and even angry. To pause and be grateful for the circumstance instead of sinking into an emotion of ugly. I pause and say, “thank you” instead of letting my mind run down the past or leap ahead into predicting the future. There is always something to be grateful for. When I can’t immediately see or understand what I should be grateful for, I just say “thank you. I don’t understand right now why this is happening, but thank you.” There are other times it is a matter I just laugh at the situation. Thursday morning, November 28, 2019, Thanksgiving morning, I woke up to find my beloved rescue dog must have eaten something that disagreed with him. He left a mess, in piles, across the dining room. Yep, the dining room on Thanksgiving morning. The holiday which centers on the dining room! But before I cursed, I paused. I found what to be grateful for, and I was even able to laugh. I was grateful that the automatic robot vacuum I had always wanted had never become a reality. Imagine if I had one and it had deployed during the night? It would have tracked that mess all over the house. I was grateful I had a house. I was grateful for it all, mess and all.
Paul and I created Grandfamily Today to lift Grandfamilies out of the negative. We knew we needed a community of similar families to laugh with, share with, and have fun. We deserve it. Our grandson deserves it. Grandfamilies know the sad circumstances which birthed their existence. We ask you to join us if you’re a “Grand”family.
Join us at Grandfamily Today as we host an intentional, vibrant, knowledgeable, and social community uniting Relative Caregivers and Grandparents raising or co-raising grandchildren.
Join us and together let’s work to bring Grandfamily caregivers out of isolation and into a community offering social opportunities, learning opportunities, peer support, and fun. www.grandfamilytoday.org
Thank you to each of you who has stepped in and stepped up to be a relative caregiver. Thank you to each of you for reading this blog. Thank you to each of you who will show this to a relative caregiver you know. I’m grateful.