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The Leavenworth Times - Leavenworth, KS
  • Down Home: Grandmas know all, don't you know?

  • It takes every fiber in my being not to snatch the crying baby from their mothers' arms.
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  • It takes every fiber in my being not to snatch the crying baby from their mothers' arms.
    This knee-jerk reaction is also known as being a grandma.
    When the grandbabies are crying, I feel the need to intervene. I'm sure when I hover and repeat over and over again, "Here, let me take him," it doesn't help my daughters feel any less anxious, but I just can't help myself.
    I'm certain I can fix any problem the baby has, just let me have him.
    The grandchildren have taken over my heart and apparently my sanity. I never dreamed I would become this obsessed about another child, other than my own.
    It's hard not being the one in control and making all the decisions for these little people, but then again, the only thing that gets me out of bed is the alarm clock, so being the grandparent does have certain advantages.
    Every new task they accomplish is a big deal. I demand to know every detail.
    I realize I've become one of those "crazy" grandmas who voice their opinion, whether it's wanted or not, but frankly I don't intend to stop. Being a grandma is like a second chance at being a mother, and I'm all in.
    The 3-month-old has begun to smile and coo and is desperately trying to figure out how to work his hands. Both fists seem to naturally migrate to his mouth and he has even conquered getting both of them in at the same time, which is uncomfortable, so then he looks as if someone else did this to him.
    With his main concern of when the next feeding will begin, he has nearly caught up with his cousin in weight. If you don't feed him when he thinks it's time, everybody knows he's an unhappy camper.
    The 6-month-old grandson has mastered his hands and likes to rip my reading glasses off my face. As far as I'm concerned, he can break them all.
    He laughs hysterically when I smell his feet and exclaim, "stinky, stinky." His main focus is also eating, although it isn't always food. Everything he touches has to be tasted.
    I often get in trouble for giving him items the mother doesn't think he should have.
    Having grandchildren is like dangling a carrot in front of a hungry rabbit. Just when I get a nibble, it's time for them to go home. The sons-in-law seem to understand my obsession, or they have just given up trying to fight me for control, as they hand off the baby as soon as they get in the door.
    The daughters, on the other hand, are gently but sternly making sure I know they are in control.
    Page 2 of 2 - The oldest daughter, being more diplomatic, will say, "I'll let you have him, Mom, once I get him calmed down." The youngest one takes the straight on approach with, "Back off, Mom, I've got this."
    Either way, hearing the babies cry sends me into a fight or flight mode, so with sweaty palms and racing heart all I can do is wait for my turn.
    They say mothers know best, but grandmas know all, they just haven't realized it yet.
    Sandy Turner lives in the Kansas City area and writes this column for GateHouse Media.

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