I have a snapshot of myself, looking so smug you would think I had produced her myself.
It’s lovely being a Grandma; the only thing is, you have to be a mum first, and that’s jolly hard work! Anyway, once you have got that hurdle over, suddenly you find yourself holding another baby and you are a Grandmother.
When this happened for the first time, I had just completed a year at a college of Further Education, where I had gained GCEs in English Language and English Literature, and was about to wave them under the nose of a librarian who had said in an interview that he would give me a job if I had some recent qualifications after realising how long it had been since I had taken any examination.
However, Katherine had other ideas for me. She needed a full-time Grandma, as Mum wasn’t too well at first and then there was a heatwave and it was suffocating in the flat above the shopping precinct. So, they came to Grandma’s in Grand-dad’s Minivan, which was loaded with all the paraphernalia a baby needs, until the heat-wave wore off. After this, Grandma descended from her house at the top of a hill, most days, to see that all was well with mother and baby. In the cool of the evening, her Daddy escaped with her onto the flat roof above to get some fresh air and have some time together. I have a snapshot of myself, pushing Katherine in her pram outside the shopping centre, and looking so smug you would think I had produced her myself.
So, we became great friends and as Katherine has a great sense of humour, we have had many a laugh together over the years. Once, when I was changing her nappy, she jumped off my knee and before I could grab her ran out of the open door and into the back garden wearing only a vest; much to the amusement of my neighbours and their visitors who were having afternoon tea outside.
Katherine is now a lovely girl of nineteen and my second grandchild, Jonathan, her baby brother is now attending a Sixth Form College and wants to be an Architect eventually. He is seventeen. Jonathan is rather more reserved than Katherine but is just as affectionate towards me, and if there’s no one else around will suddenly give me a big bear hug. I don’t see much of them now, as they are both so busy and have outside interests and friends of their own age, and my late husband and I moved out of the area when he retired. However, they are both taking driving lessons so will probably arrive on my doorstep, unexpectedly, as a surprise, some day. As I said – it’s lovely being a Grandma.