I’m very well aware that being a long distance grandparent is a very common situation in today’s world. The physical world has gotten smaller, long distance travel is more commonplace, and the distances just aren’t as large a hurdle as it used to be. Yet it’s difficult, no doubt about it. But like with everything else associated with aging and empty nest, it’s a fact of life. So…
- The Pros: I’m happy that my grandgirls are surrounded by a large and loving extended family, something that they would not have if they were living close to me. I’m thrilled that my daughter has a husband who is a wonderful father and family man, and that they are a loving and close family unit. The best part? When THIS Grammy and Papa come to town, it’s all good! We just have fun, go places and do things, and soak up being in each other’s company. Getting them their first pedicure was more fun than you can even imagine!
- The cons: Missing them, of course. Seeing them twice a year or so makes the changes all the more apparent, and makes it feel like the things we’re missing are paramount. In the time we do get to visit, sometimes I’m painfully aware of how little I do know about my grandchildren and their daily lives – as well as that of my daughter and son-in-law – and I simply feel sad about it on occasion.
There are lots of ways to cope with long distance grandparenting and stay involved in their lives. I suggest doing that as much and as often as possible! Life goes on, and who knows? Some time I may wake up and find out they’re living right next door!