Dr. Ducharme’s Blog Grandparenting...one of the true joys of life July 29, 2019

July 29, 2019

I always wanted children. And I have loved being a mom. Although being a parent is the hardest job any of us will ever have, it has always been my first love. Sure, there were days when I was exhausted and on occasion thought of running away...for an hour or two. But, I feel truly blessed to have my wonderful children. And now, I am enjoying the fruits of all that hard work... grandchildren! They are precious, each and every one.

I have learned that one of the most important things we can give our grandchildren is our time. Toys are enjoyed for awhile and then, often lost or forgotten. But the time we spend together will always be precious. Sharing experiences and making memories together are so meaningful. I love France and speaking French. I have routinely sung French songs, read French stories and spoken words and  phrases to our grandchildren. My youngest granddaughter has been particularly receptive to these experiences. So this summer, we had an amazing opportunity  to spend time together in France. We walked the streets of Paris, ate pain au chocolate (croissants filled with chocolate), visited the the major sites and practiced our French.

My husband and I were able to take my oldest granddaughter to New York for her high school graduation gift. She loves the theatre and we spent a few days (in spite of the scorching heat) enjoying the city, seeing musicals and eating great food. We could have just written her a check or bought her a particular gift. But the time we spent together was incredibly precious to us.

I feel incredibly close to my grandchildren. And so much of that is because of time spent together. At family gatherings it is rare that we talk about particular gifts they received. Rather it is memories of experiences together…time in an Escape Room, Trick or Treating, baking together etc. You get the picture.

So, instead of toys, consider giving experiences together. There is nothing that can actually replace the time you spend with each other.