I have a serious case of grandma-envy. It’s not that my daughter doesn’t have any—she does. In fact, she has four loving grandparents who live two Provinces away. And that’s the problem.
When I see a granny or grampie or nana or grandpa walking down the street pushing their grandchild in a stroller, I want to cry I am so jealous. While most people might yearn for a brand new sports car or a big fancy house, I long to have the nearby support of our parents. My husband and I have been living in Toronto for many years because of work, and up until the birth of our daughter last year, the distance suited us just fine. But now that we have a wee-one in the house, I have come to realize just how much we are missing out on by not having our parents close by.
Other friends of mine who have young children can always count on the fact that they have built-in, trustworthy babysitters if they have appointments or if they want a much needed night out with their spouse. I’ve even known some grandparents to act as full-time caregivers, while mom and dad are at work. I acknowledge that is a rare case, but it must be nice not to have to worry about screening nannies or wait-listing at a daycare.
Free babysitting not withstanding, I also feel bad about the fact that our parents are missing some of the daily joys of being around our daughter. They have developed close relationships with our nieces and nephews, and I worry that our kid won’t have that same chance.
So, the next time you feel the urge to complain because your mom is giving you parenting tips from the 70s, or your dad lets your child watch too many cartoons, think about my situation and be grateful for those sweet little annoyances. If not, feel free to send your parents my way, we could always use the extra help!