Posts tagged " grandchildren "

Do I build my business or live near my grown children?

May 7th, 2015 Posted by Ask the Rabbi No Comment yet

Question:

When my parents were at my current age I look back and see that they stopped life. The pain was too great for them and they retreated. My wife’s parents became so involved in the grandkids that they also eventually became lost and alone as the grandkids moved away.
I want to show my kids something different and here is my dilemma. I can expand my business to other areas and states to increase our finance or I can go to where my kids and granddaughter will be and do business but not expand the business.
 
Thanks for your insight.

∼ Robert F.

Answer:

Dear Robert,
One of the most musical sounds in our memory repertoire is, “Daddy/Mommy, come here. I need you.” We are very blessed; our grown children are kind enough to promote an effective illusion that our involvement in their lives is important to them. We choose to believe them.

Graternity Leave: Take Two

November 23rd, 2010 Posted by Thought Tools 2 comments

The past few weeks have been a true period of blessing for our family. Just over a week ago our daughter, Rachelle, and her husband, Zev, presented us with an enchanting granddaughter.

While my husband and I dislike being apart, for the second time in less than a month we are miles from each other (see previous entries, Graternity Leave, and Eat, Pray, Eat, Love, Eat.). I am helping with a newborn in New Jersey while my husband is at home, focused on our work.

Jewish girls get named when their fathers are called up in public during the reading of the Torah. Giving a child a name is one of the first responsibilities parents have, and our children took that responsibility most seriously.

This past Shabbat, the baby was given the name, Aliza Malya. Aliza means ‘joyous’ in Hebrew and carries the meaning of Zev’s grandmother’s name. Zev knew his grandmother well and in naming their daughter after her, he and Rachelle want to bestow on her the delighted way her namesake approached life.  Malya was my husband’s mother, and Rachelle was gifted with years of knowing her grandmother as well. My mother-in-law was a woman with qualities of strength, leadership and faith – along with a marvelous sense of humor.

Bearing the names of these two women is a weighty legacy for a teeny girl. She has yet to find her thumb or sleep through the night. She doesn’t even have a proper belly button. As she passes those milestones and ever so many more, I pray that she will grow into her name and admirably carry on the values her great-grandmothers enthusiastically embraced and the qualities they exemplified.  With their names, she has been given a precious gift to accompany her throughout her life. 

 

Graternity Leave

October 12th, 2010 Posted by Thought Tools 6 comments

 

Here is an entitlement program I can support: graternity leave (maternity = mother; paternity = father; graternity = grandparent). I’m not thinking of initiating a lawsuit or picketing corporate America, however I would like to raise social awareness of this option.

After a month of Jewish holydays which substantially cut down on available work days, I should be aggressively returning to business. The backlog of unanswered emails and the work needed to get our newest audio CD available for sale are overwhelming. Customer interaction, Musings writing and regular administrative details are all areas which have been sorely neglected.

I’m afraid they will continue to be disregarded, or at the very least they won’t get my undivided attention. Our daughter and son-in-law presented us with an enchanting baby boy early Sunday morning a week ago. I am in Jerusalem filling my daughter’s freezer and helping her adjust to her new reality. In theory, I could find time to do some work as well, but I’d rather spend my time staring at the baby as he yawns, squishes his face and gazes around.  I am hereby invoking graternity leave.

Word crafting runs in our family. My son has pointed out that there is an inclusive word for sisters and brothers – siblings. However, no equivalent exists for nieces and nephews of which, thank God, he has a growing numbers. Hence, his new word – niblings.

Longer musings from me will resume shortly.

Searching for More Bibs

August 10th, 2010 Posted by Thought Tools No Comment yet

Have you seen those “Where are they now?” notices on your computer? They refer to the cast of a TV show that has been off the air for a while. If you are avoiding work you can spend too many minutes catching up on the lives of people about whom you would otherwise never think.

Re-reading the blog post below and noticing that it is almost three years old made me ask the same question, but about women I truly care for and with whom I speak regularly.

We are still working. We are still involved with our families. But as the collective number of married children with their own children increases we face a new dilemma. The conflict between home and work is now a multi-generational one.

I was fortunate to have four grandparents living near me through most of my childhood. My maternal grandmother, I was sure, had three modes of existence.

1) Waiting for me to visit
2) Being thrilled that I was visiting
3) Getting ready for my next visit.

I was extremely irritated to discover any number of cousins who thought that the homemade cookies and the welcome mat were actually meant for them. Furthermore, I never connected the volunteer work my grandmother did or the friends I occasionally heard about with the concept that there might be something other than me as the pivot point of her life.

It was a wonderful feeling and was my default understanding of grandmother-hood. My grandmother did not ever, ever say, “I would love to hear your story but I have a call coming in a few minutes so can I call you back,” or “I can’t wait for you to visit, but now just isn’t a good time.”

Not so for my friends and me. Not only do many of our children and grandchildren live in different states and even countries from us, but we face a simple reality of needing to produce income. This takes a serious time commitment. We are simply are not as available to our families as we would like to be.

While I am grateful for having been a stay-at-home mom, I admit to not having thought about the desire to be a stay-at-home (granted, with children all over the place, I don’t even know whose home that would be) mom of grown children and a stay-at-home grandma. I am blessed with work I love, but my paycheck has a fair amount of longing tied to it.

My well-worn bib collection has long ago been thrown out. Hopefully, in the years to come I will be able to start a frequently used second-generation one.