As a young mom back in the day when I had the first four of my children, I joined a Toastmasters Club in the metro area. This group met once a month so it was an opportunity to get out and learn a little more about public speaking.
One of the first tasks in the group was to learn how to tell a joke in public. I got up to the podium and said, “My husband told me not to say this but…” The group burst out laughing. I had not even finished my intro let alone my joke! (I should have sat down right then!) “…but I have never told a joke in public!” They roared with laughter again. That definitely was my cue to sit, but I dug my heels in and told the joke which totally flopped! lol!
Over 30 years later (maybe 40) I continue to collect real life stories and such for my someday comedy routine.
When the grandkids come to visit I am always up for helping out with any certain training going on in their little lives. Recently, a few weeks ago, little T came to visit, age 3 and a few months, and in the ending stages of potty training. His number 1’s were going fine. Not the # 2’s. So, during his 3 day stay, he burst out, “I have to go poop, Oma!” So we ran to the nearest bathroom and I closed the door so he could have his pwivacy, as he called it. I told him I would sit outside the bathroom on the chair near the laundry room. He told me when he was done that there was a snake in the toilet! I thought, that sounds ok. Then, I did the poo poo dance: I yanked off a 2-3′ piece of t.p. and danced around waving it while celebrating T’s victory! “Great job, T! I’m so proud of you!”
Just a few days ago, T came to visit with his family. “I have to go poop, Mom! But I want Oma to help me!” I ran into the house with him and he asked for his pwivacy again. There wasn’t exactly a snake this time but he went. I’ll spare the details. As he finished flushing and such, he said, “Oma, do that poop dance!” So I tore off the 2-3′ long piece of t.p. and did my thing!
Back to the local library and I found a book called The Secrets of Happy Families by Bruce Feiler. Although I did not agree with everything in the book, I was so intrigued by some information in the chapter titled: The Right Way to Have Family Dinner. Telling stories about your history and your family’s history is so very very important in raising our children and grandchildren. Children need to know they are part of a bigger picture, part of a larger family.
It’s important for the children to know where you grew up, how you met your spouse, some of the joys and trials and more. Having a strong intergenerational self is important for the children to be able to grow up, be resilient, and move forward.
Grandmas, it turns out, are central to the wellness of the child. When a problem comes up, tell a story about a relative who had a similar trial and how it worked out. When you are eating a meal and telling these stories, it’s win win. Eating together is nurturing. Eating with family, hearing these stories, is nourishing. Being able to hear the stories and then putting yourself into the family history is so key. Let the children know that they are part of a bigger picture.
The woke state of our culture is seeping into every little crack and crevice. What it looks like for you may be very different for me. As someone now with gray hair and a dozen grandchildren I read about it in the news, pretty much now, whenever I read the news. One writer even commented that for caucasian men, it is literally getting harder and harder for them to even open their mouth to talk.
What a travesty this is that our culture has become so infiltrated with this ideology. Sibling rivalry, whether it happens today, or 50 years ago, is seen as oppression. Just normal everyday life can be twisted into a life wherein there is an oppressor and the oppressed. Little children are being taught if their skin is a certain color, they are the oppressor. Having grown up in a big family, and seeing where we are all at now that we are in our 50’s – 70’s shows that even if you had the same upbringing, went to the same schools, played the same sports, wore the same uniforms, ate the same suppers, had the same parents…you all grow up to be very unique and different individuals.
So, just thinking if we control the environment for everyone, making it the same, doesn’t mean that we are all going to grow up to be the same. If we can remember a couple things: we are all sinners (Romans 3:23) and God is sovereign (Ephesians 1), these will go along way in helping us understand who we are and what is going on in the world. I really think wokeness is spiritual broke-ness.