We celebrated my Granddaddy’s 91st birthday today. There were several people there, and several missing, but it was a great day.
But here’s the deal.
He’s not my real Granddaddy. I do not like when people use the word “real” to describe relationships; “real dad”, “real mom”, “real grandparents”.
As an adoptee, I use the word “birth” parent, not real parent. I use “adoptive” parent, not another description.
But back to my granddaddy.
There are a lot of “step” parents out there, so therefore there are a lot of “step” grandparents.
Do you “step” grandparents know what power you have?
You have the power of belonging. You have the power of love, of inclusion, of giving a child a family they didn’t have before.
Step grandparents are “REAL” grandparents, trust me. I know.
Mine became my grandparents when I was 9 years old, and they have never treated me any differently that before.
My “step” father was just about as good a dad to me as my dad was. My “step” dad’s family treated me just like I belonged to them, and I have never felt unwanted or unloved.
So my Granddaddy, who is my “step”mother’s dad, has Alzheimer’s and it is a getting much worse. I remember when I first realized that it was happening, about 13 years ago, when I heard him use a curse word which would have never passed his lips before.
My “Step”granddaddy has Alzheimer’s but let me tell you one thing…He ALWAYS remembers my name. He looked at me Sunday, on his birthday, and said, “Tina, are you leaving?”
“Yep, Granddaddy, I’ve got to go.”
He said, “Well, you know you can come back, I’ll be here.”
I hope so, Granddaddy. I told my mom (“STEP” mom) yesterday that I believe I will miss my Granddaddy more than I miss my dad at this point…Grandddaddy still talks and laughs, and knows who I am. What in the world will we do when he’s gone.
“I was the last of 16 children, Momma looked at Daddy after I was born and said, “Jim, I think I am done.”
See, all you “STEP” parents out there….you have the ability to STEP up or step down, but I challenge you to step up to make a difference in your child’s life. My STEP’s did.