Should I Be The Grandma on the Floor No More

One of the absolute best tips I received as a new grandma almost two decades ago was to always be the grandma on the floor.  Of course, I asked what that meant.  My friend explained that to really connect with your grandchild, you really have to spend all your time on the floor–at their level.

I have spent hours and hours on the floor with six grandchildren. I have laid head to head with a newborn grandchild who cannot yet lift their head.  When they hit six weeks old or more, it does make them smile and it warms your heart when you see that smile. Starting at three months, I did yoga positions above and around the grandchildren, teaching them yoga as soon as I could.

I watch the other grandparents standing or sitting on the couch, and I understand why to be the grandma on the floor.  They are so big and so far away.  I want close.  I want the close connection with the grandchild.  Yes, to me it does mean spending the rest of your grandma life sitting on the floor–at least until the grandchild stops sitting on the floor.

Our youngest grandchild is now nearly four and a half and I still spend hours on the floor building with him with magnet blocks, Legos, or making creative marble runs and having miniature car chases. Our youngest grandchild will tell you he is five as he wants to be older like his older brothers, now eleven and fifteen. Older is important to him. Longer (as we grandparents do not use the word older as related to us) is not a blessing to bones that have been sitting on the floor for decades, even for a nearly three decade yogi like this grandma. Yes, I do yearn for the days of when sitting or lying on the floor with grandchildren was with ease.

This week, I told the youngest that the floors in Florida are very hard and this Grandma does not want to sit on the floor anymore. Believe it or not, it was not taken very well. I was handed a pillow to sit on.

Over nearly two decades, I have found that being the grandma on the floor has so many advantages.  You will be the first one whose arms they crawl into.  You will be the first one who they hand something to.  You will be the one who becomes their comfort person.

A long dear friend, a bit younger than me, has two baby grandchildren now after two grandchildren much older, college age and high school age. We talk about the differences and the ease of great activity as a grandma two decades younger. But, we persevere as the grandma on the floor because this joy of young grandchildren is so fleeting.

My daughters sometimes say they think that the grandchildren love me more. That is the way it is supposed to be.

 I do think being the grandma on the floor made and makes a big difference.

Just now, the heating pad at bedtime is waiting with

Joy,

Mema

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