All four of my grandparents were gone before my 21st birthday, and my paternal grandmother before my 10th, so I barely knew her (her husband died before I was even born). I have always felt that my two brothers and I were close to our maternal grandparents, spending significant summer vacations (1 or more months) with them in a northwoods cabin, and I’d like to think that my grandmother would have been considerate and at least listened to me. She like my other 3 grandparents had gone through some rough times, the 2 world wars, the great depression, (where 3 or the 4 lost their jobs or worked for no pay for a year or more) so they were no doubt used to adversity, used to disappointment, and I would think, used to being appreciative of the struggles of others .
But as I was to learn later, both my paternal grandmother and my maternal grandparents favored – rather distinctly as I now look back from the advantage of adulthood, as well as from discussions with my mother and my brothers – on the other sibling, my father’s younger brother and my mother’s older sister. So even tho we saw them regularly, I do have to wonder how they really saw my two brothers and me.
What I did learn and have tried to put into practice is to be as attentive, understanding and loving as I can be to my now four grandchildren, which has been a challenge since both sets live more than 1000 miles away.