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As I passed through my fifties, I was totally astonished to see what was happening in the lives of various women who I knew quite well, in one way or another. Each one was affected in some way, by their children having children of their own.

Some of them were totally thrilled and excited about being active participants in the lives of the new families. Others were extremely negative, stating that they had already raised their own children and had to raise their grandchildren too, so that their own children could do the things that they wanted to do.  

Yet others were very angry and upset, as they were being totally excluded from the families, for one reason or another.  

Some of the families had moved away. Some of the grandmothers were able to visit their children and grandchildren, while for others, it was not possible.    

At the heart of this entire scenario, is motherly love.  

This raises the question of “Who is the benefactor and who is the beneficiary?” in a love relationship like this.

Let’s take it one step further.  

A child puts his or her hand into a mother’s hand. Both love and trust are central in this relationship. At some point in time, the child grows up and like a little bird who has to fly, learns how to use its new wings. It flies away. The next thing you know, there is another nest of little birds.  

Where does that leave the mother bird, or maybe we should say, the grandmother bird?          

A mother bestows love on her child, but is shocked to realize that the relationship between them, has become different in some way. She still loves her child.  

Who is the benefactor? Who is the beneficiary of this love?  


Sometimes it is really hard to tell, isn’t it?


Member Comments

    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Ladybug wrote Sep 23, 2008
    • I love how you just throw these things out there like you‘re only an observer....I had to say it.
      I have come to terms with the fact that children are not ours, it has been our priviledge to raise them. Then you give over and let them experience the pain for themselves. I don’t yet know if mine will exclude me or burden me with their families but I know that this is my time to live. And I’m hard at it.
      Don’t take my sense of humor the wrong way. Thank you for your frank, “let’s just deal with the issues” approach. It helps.
      Now a fan!

            Report  Reply

    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      W. Diane Van Zwol wrote Sep 24, 2008
    • Hi Parma,

      Thanks ever so much for your comments. You might say that I am an active participant and observer, in more ways than one.  

      By the way, I just love your sense of humor!    


            Report  Reply

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