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Growing a Grandma's Heart

I had an experience with my kindergarten grandson over his first-ever report card that brought one of my favorite movies into mind.

Remember the part of Dr. Seuss's How the Grinch Stole Christmas where the Grinch realizes that "Maybe Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more?" His heart then grows a full 3 sizes.

I know I am his grandma and not exactly objective, but my grandson's report card was spectacular.

It was filled with all of the accomplishments he has achieved like knowing his upper and lower case letters and counting to 100. It was also great to see that he was excelling in things like treating others respectfully and working well on a team.

In my experience, you rewarded your child for bringing home good grades.

I received parental permission to give him $2 for working so hard and succeeding at all-things-kindergarten. He was thrilled with this wealth. (Remember that he knows the value of a dollar).

The next day my mother – his "GG" gave him $1 for this milestone. Afterward, he asked me quietly if he could have one more dollar? I asked him why he wanted an additional dollar, clearly expecting that I had now evidently established $2 as the defacto payment for a good report card.

He answered that he wanted a dollar to give to his teacher. He explained "She is the reason I know all of this – she taught me – so she should get $1 too."

Wow.

I felt like I saw his heart growing in front of me. (and mine a bit too I will admit.)

Without even realizing it, we adults encounter circumstances and think things which cause our hearts to shrink.

The non-animated version of the Grinch story features a beautiful song "Where are you Christmas?" The lyrics in part read:

  • Where is the laughter
    You used to bring me?
    Why can't I hear music play?

The singer (Cindy Lou Who) goes on to realize that Christmas is in her heart every day. 

  • If there is love in your heart and your mind 
    You will feel like Christmas all the time

Grandchildren have very special powers.

I know this to be true. They make me smile. They let me see how wonderful my own kids – their parents – have become. They give some of the best hugs.

But being part of this grandson heart-growing process was an unexpected and very touching gift. There is a quote from one of my favorite books: The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupery.

"It is only with the heart that one can see rightly. What is essential is invisible to the eye."

My grandkids somehow instinctively know this. With practice, I will too.

Sue Klein

Sue is a mom of two, grandmother of four and daughter to her own mother. She blogs about all things 'grandma.' ...

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