Monday, April 14, 2008

The Good Mother of a Mother

That's the grandmother, of course.

My German friend, Barbara Asper, was babysitting for her daughter Maya's children, Jana and Juri, while Maya was away at a teacher's conference for four days.

Barbara was reading the list Maya left her, about the kids' schedules, mealtime menus, activities. She looked up at me and said, in a proud and happy voice: "I always do exactly what my daughter tells me to do!"

"Wow," I said. "That's remarkable and generous."

Barbara continued, "Look, I had my chance as a Mother, raising my children as I wanted to. Now, it is my daughter's turn to be a Mother and do exactly what she wants. Besides, my mother-in-law never would do what I asked her to do and that made me so frustrated."

Thank you Barbara! I won't be a grandmother for awhile, but you have saved me from a lot of angst. You have taught me that Grandmothering is not showing your children that you know better than they do about how to raise their children.

The Good Grandmother respects her children's right to raise their children as they want to.'s their turn.

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