Grandma’s fingerprint shows up

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Grandma’s fingerprint shows up

I was blessed last evening to hear Greg Mortenson, author of Three Cups of Tea, speak at the College of Charleston. Walking away and throughout the night and today I reflected upon his comments which steadily hailed the value of the elder members of society. He spoke of the ways their knowledge, wisdom, and experience come together to develop perspective. This can not be acquired until you reach the status of elder. You can’t fake the wisdom that comes with age.

As I reflected on the importance the tribal elders play in the villages of which he spoke, I really was lead to think of my own family village; specifically of my mother and her influence on my oldest son, Matthew.

My son was such a “fast forty” as Mom called him. But she never sped up. She kept her pace – slow and steady. I’m sure there were times when this exasperated him, but most often, he slowed down because Grandma would take time with him. She listened, explained, watched, helped, and just like a wash cycle, she’d “lather, rinse, repeat.”

Mom enjoyed simple things. She introduced my son to a world where music was made using a pot and a spoon, where the garden was not neatly trimmed, but nature was celebrated, and where reading was done before bedtime with Beatrix Potter’s characters.

In a world of video games, hand helds, cartoons 24-7, the Internet and more, Grandma remained a natural draw. Never was going to Grandma’s a dull time. In fact, on many occasions we would take cousins with us. Everyone just wanted to be with Grandma.

Grandma, in the pink sweater, enjoys time with her sister and brother.

As I see my son growing into a young man, I see Grandma’s fingerprint on his life. I see it in how he holds the door for others. I see it in his manners, “yes ma’am” and “yes sir” have not gone to waste here. I see Grandma’s

fingerprint when Matthew cares for his younger brother or when he carries a suitcase for his aunt.

 While the reasons for spending time at the feet of our elders are not always clear to the up and coming “fast forty” generation, it is clear to me that the past is our key to the future. It is also obvious to me, as I continue losing my mother to Alzheimer’s, that I will always have pieces of her in my midst- I just look at Matthew and see Mom’s fingerprint is there.

Whose fingerprint is on your life? Who has influenced your children? Click on the comment button to leave a tribute to a special elder who has influenced your life- or is making a difference to your children.

| elders, Grandma, wisdom | November 13, 2010

About the author

Wynn Godbold is an inspired educator who stretches herself and those around her to new heights. Her work as a speaker, trainer, and administrative coach carries her across the United States where she spreads her message of inspiring teachers to reach children with authenticity, joy, and success. Her teacher retreats are known to empower teachers to love their lives. Teachers world-wide experience personal growth through the products and packages she offers on line. In June of 2012, Wynn kick started the International Academy of Bee Sharp Teachers. Wynn is Nationally Board Certified in Reading and the Language Arts. She has certifications in Education Administration, Elementary and Early Childhood Education. In addition to running Bee Sharp, she consults for the McGraw Hill Education Group and serves on the Educational Team at Page Turner Adventures. Wynn lives in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina with her husband, two sons, and the family dog, JR.

4 Responses to "Grandma’s fingerprint shows up"
  • Joanne November 15, 2010

    What a wonderful post Wynn! It made me giggle as last night I said something to Bill and he said 'you sounded just like your Mum then' and I said 'good – because my Mum is lovely!'.

    I love the fact that these wonderful traits are passed down to us, I don't have children myself but I can see them coming out in both my brothers children. My Dad passed away 11 years ago and it's wonderful to still see his traits coming out in other family members – it makes me feel like he is still close by 🙂

  • Cheri November 15, 2010

    Thanks for the lovely post, my Mom also left us wonderful lessons and I see and hear her wise presence and influence for me and my son. I think she was ahead of her time with her approach to the art of living and taking care yourself and one another. I feel her lovely presents all the time and I am so grateful.

  • Clara November 16, 2010

    Wynn, This is such a warm, lovely post (as, by the way, was I Miss My Mommy, which I read recently). What comes to mind for me right away is my grandmother, who died a few years ago, and my mom, who is very much alive, but we don't live near each other. Both wonderful cooks and made/make food very much the heart of our family. Even with my grandmother gone and not seeing my mom on a regular basis, still my daughters still really get how food and cooking is woven into our lives.

  • Wynn Godbold November 16, 2010

    Joanne, Cheri, and Clara,
    Oh the beauty of our heritage. You all warm my hearts as you share about your moms/mums (Joanne-love the way you say mum!).

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