I remember celebrating my father’s 60th. Birthday, and I did not say this out loud, but definitely thought “he is an old man”. But he lived close to another 3 decades and I am glad he did. His father (my grandfather) was not as lucky, and he died at the age of 49.
Now that I am in my 60’s, we just don’t seem as old as our parents when they were our current age. Perhaps it is caused by modern science or perhaps we just lose our eyesight and think we look better than we really are…
I am glad that my dad stuck around a few more decades because I saw a different dad as he aged, than when I was growing up and he was caught many times choosing work over family, He had time to reflect on the ethics of life and how important family really is.
Now that we are our parent’s age, can we look back and distinguish when we began to take responsibilities for our actions? Can we look back and figure out when we strived to understand the difference between “me and us” or how to “share”?
Grandparents today are more important than ever. With broken families, single moms and single dads raising our grandkids, it is truer than ever that it takes a village to raise a person. Even in a traditional family with the stresses of work, social media, the Internet, peer pressure and now Covid, our kids need our help in raising a complete child.
We need to make sure we take an active role in molding this newest generation, into a society that surpasses us baby boomers. I happen to be a children’s book author, so my passion is to get us to read to the grandkids. Reading helps create bonding with this new generation because it is a quiet way to spend time together and strengthen our relationships. It also supports listening skills, which as adults we know may be the most important skill we learn. It helps with cognitive and language development by expanding the number and variety of words they learn and use. And it helps develop a longer attention span which helps them improve key concentration and self-discipline skills.
Reading is one thing you can do with your grandkids. Take our children’s children to a ball game, teach them to kick a ball, show them how to play an instrument or take them bowling for the first time. Just spending quality time with kids when their parents are harried with work and life, will make a difference as they mature and make the decisions every day of what is right and what is wrong. We are at the age where we cannot be selfish anymore. We need to “share” what the greatest generation taught us; and what we have all learned as growing older turns into understanding to share our wisdom.
About the Author
Gramps Jeffrey, author of "I Don't Want to Turn 3" has 4 kids and 6 grandchildren. As the author of the acclaimed business book “The Secrets of Retailing…How to Beat Walmart” and a contributor to The Huffington Post of over 100 articles on how to help the nonprofit world and also help grow small businesses, Gramps’ commentary is quite timely in the challenging world we live in.