A special place for great grandparents

MY children, nieces and nephews are lucky to have great grandparents.

When my first born arrived in the world, she had four great  grandparents.

I remember calling my pop the day before his birthday telling him his newest great grandchild had arrived three weeks early - and his response was 'why didn't you wait until tomorrow?'

Pop would have loved her to have been born on his birthday. He didn't know she was scheduled to be induced on his birthday for medical reasons, we kept it a surprise. But my  determined little girl had other plans and arrived a day early. 

She became the apple of great pop's eye, but he died not long after her first birthday,  on the same day her great grandfather on her paternal side passed away,

I remember whispering in pop's ear in the hours before he died that he was expecting another little great granddaughter. He couldn't acknowledge it, but I knew it would have made him so happy.

But great grandpa, my mother's father who was known to my eldest as 'mate grandpa,' loved his visits from his great grandchildren.

'Mate grandpa' passed away in my second daughter's first year, but there were some special memories shared in those few short years.

Yesterday, my grandma and the great grandma of my children, celebrated her 87th birthday.  Grandma is fit, lives independently and drives. 

She volunteers, gardens and knits.  And she loves those visits or phone calls from her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.

Photos of each family line her walls, with the great grandchildren taking pride of place. Gran adores them. And equally, they adore her. 

They love that she enjoys doing things with others, that she appreciates the efforts others go to and that she believes in a healthy, active life.

They find her life and stories interesting - and different to theirs.

They are fascinated by her knitting and impressed by her efforts - taking out the first prize in many categories at the Bendigo show until recent years.

I remember spending hours with my great nana. My sisters and I would walk our doll prams to her unit and she would make blankets for our 'babies'. As she aged,  I would visit her in the hospice after school and take her for walks in her wheelchair or call the bingo numbers for nana Lena and her friends. Nana Lena was funny and cheeky and let me be that, too. They were special days. 

A great grandparent is a curious thing to a young person. 

My girls love and cherish their grandma and poppy, but having a great grandma is so special. 

They are blessed to continue to have her in their lives.

Happy birthday, great gran. 

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