By Stanley Collymore
There are Grandmothers and there are also Grandmas;
at first glance and on the face of it there’s no
distinction between the two terms of
expression it would seem, but
that’s where you’re wrong a thousandfold.
Since in any household worthy of the
name the two definitions aren’t
mutually compatible or
For biologically most females can and do invariably
at some time or other, whether they wanted to
or not, become grandmothers, provided
of course they similarly have fertile
children of their own to start with. An exercise
and physiological outcome that combined
don’t require that much thought on the
part of the participants and even
less involvement or support,
if any is dispensed that
is, by the prospective
Grandmas, however, are different: a rare and special
breed of persons who not only made all the
requisite efforts and sacrifices they
could to ensure that their offspring got the very
best of starts possible in life and with their
invaluable help, inspiration and guidance
sustained that advantage throughout it;
but significantly also willingly and
welcomingly do their utmost to make certain in every
way, and crucially through their constant physical
presence and encouragement, that their much
treasured grandchildren do the same. And
you my new and esteemed friend are
evidently the model Grandma in
every accepted sense of that
cherished word, and not
simply so in name!
© Stanley V. Collymore
1 January 2014.
With Grandmas everywhere generally in mind this poem however was written specifically for and is expressly dedicated to a truly charming, poised, highly intelligent, outstandingly communicative and an exceptionally amiable Grandma who in the company of her equally remarkable junior school aged granddaughter I met for the very first time at a cold, blustery and rain swept Worthing seafront bus shelter on Monday 23 December 2013.
Without exaggeration an unforgettable encounter while the three of us were waiting for the same bus to take us to our respective homes; and an undoubted Lady in every positive interpretation of that word who I shall affectionately refer to here as the “Broadwater Grandma”, even though she doesn’t live in Worthing but was visiting and staying with her married daughter, a medical doctor, her son-in-law and their children, naturally her grandchildren, for the Christmas and New Year holidays. Something she regularly does at every other opportunity as well throughout the year; for in her words: “I like to spend as much time as I possibly can with my grandchildren.” Well said!
For the benefit of those of you not familiar with the area Broadwater is a district of the English seaside resort of Worthing. And let’s fervently hope that you too experience and continue to have a similar excellent rapport with your surviving Grandmas; or even better still if you unfortunately don’t that you’ll use 2014 to seek to persuade and ultimately convert your Grandmothers into becoming model Grandmas. Life, let’s be honest, is far too short not to; and failing to make the effort only to subsequently discover all too late and regrettably so that you no longer have the opportunity to is a catastrophe not worth visiting on yourself, believe me.
From birth I’ve been extremely fortunate and thoroughly blessed to have had both sets of my grandparents play significant roles in my life, and most particularly so my maternal Grandma, that carried on throughout my childhood well into my adulthood; and that same experience is also true in respect of my siblings. So I’m speaking from personal experience and most definitely recommend this familial overture. Go on, try it! After all, you’ve nothing to lose and a great deal to gain!