GRANDFATHERHOOD (WHAT’S SO GRAND ABOUT IT)
I have recently noticed that I am old; mostly due to the fact that I’m turning forty-six, which now puts me closer to fifty than forty. Oy! At least before, there was comfort in the fact that I was closer to forty, but like my youth, that ship has sailed.
Technically, I’m not really old, I guess. What’s making me feel old is the fact that I am about to become a grandfather. How can that be? It can’t be happening, grandfathers look like Wilford Brimley, full of sage advice and timely aphorisms, always there when you need them. Unless they’re dead…hmm, you know, maybe being a grandfather isn’t such a bad thing after all.
So, my daughter informed me that I’m going to have a grandson in January. I’m not sure that gives me time to get used to the idea; another fifteen years should do the trick, however. Everybody tells me to just accept the concept, it’s a natural process, to which I respond with a scream loud enough to drain my sinuses. I have to admit, my first reaction was denial; I told Pam that under NO circumstances would the kid be calling me by any of the following “cutesy” nicknames: Grandpa, paw-paw, pee-paw, po-po, or any other substitute for grandfather. It would be Mr. Longoria or, if he found that honorific too unwieldy, he could call me “sir”.
Well, that went over like a party hat at a funeral, as you can imagine, so I had to retreat and do some damage control, as everyone was excoriating me for my resistance to “Grandfatherhood”, that natural process everyone kept raving about….HAH! The only natural process I could see was my resistance and denial.
If I have to be honest, my first reaction was a visceral, and selfish, one. It’s hard enough to meet women when you’re my age, but throw in the grandfather thing and you might as well forget it; an agoraphobic would go out on more dates than I would. And if I did go out, it would probably be with some AARPer who has the purple hair to match her varicose veins. Am I being a little self-centered in my thought process? Should I just embrace Grandfatherhood and look forward to spending some quality time with the little Munchkin? Or should I force them to drag me into acceptance, kicking and screaming, all while I thumb through the personals in the AARP newsletter?
Granddad; let me just roll that off my tongue a few times to see how it feels. It feels like I need a bottle of Old Granddad’s Whiskey to make it roll a little easier. I suppose that I will get used to the idea, but to be quite frank, this would be a whole lot easier if it were happening to someone else.
A traumatic event in my life, but I’ll cope; I just have to look for the bright spot. AARPers do get a motel discount, don’t they?