Dear Grandma and Grandpa,

Time! The indefinite continued progress of existence and events in the past, present, and future regarded as a whole. Time spent at work, time spent on you, time spent with friends, time spent with family, time spent with children and grandchildren.

Time is limited and goes by fast. 

Often you make time for what is important to you. When people spend time together it yields connections and memories that last a lifetime. I agree with Lee Christopher who said, “There’s only one thing more precious than our time and that’s who we spend it on.”

Please spend time on them.

All we are asking from you is time with our kids, too. We (and our kids) see you spending a majority of your free time with my sister and her kids. Our kids hear your stories of what happened while you were all on vacation together or how big the caught fish was while camping. They hear the stories of making cut-out Christmas cookies, how special it was because it was just them and grandma. 

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Then our kids think, why not me?! We know, she’s your daughter, and you are going to spend time with her because that’s what moms and daughters do. But by spending your time on them, do you see how it makes our kids feel less than precious to you? 

Please spend time on them.

Our sons and daughter are your grandkids too, and they want your time. Time to create memories together, make cookies together, tractor rides, and camping trips. I get it, some mothers feel they have less in common with a daughter-in-law or their son, making it hard to spend time with their family. But what I do not understand is why this should affect time spent with your grandkids.

What we know is time is limited, and when we hear your stories of vacations with your daughter and her children, camping trips, making meals together, or just pulling weeds, it makes our hearts hurt. It hurts for those moments that won’t happen with our children. Hurts that your wisdom and love are not something they will know, for no other reason than time.

Our hearts crumble when we think of the lack of moments between you and our children, for it is those moments that give kids a solid foundation in a way only a grandparent can.  

When our kids see Snapchats from their cousins with grandma and grandpa, we see the hurt wash over their faces. They are old enough to feel the hurt, yet young enough to not internalize that memories will not be there for them to one day cherish.

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Grandmothers and grandfathers are like angels, who take you under their wings, they watch and pray over you and would give you anything. Please spend time on them.

Please know, we do not want to take away from your relationship with your other grandchildren. Please know we understand the push and pulls of family life. It can’t always be tit for tat and certain times call for more energy put into one child or grandchild. We also don’t want to take away from the bond between a mother and daughter. We just want you to spend time on them.

Love,
Your son and daughter-in-law

P.S.
To ourselves as future grandparents,

Please allow us to always remember this feeling and to know that playing favorites (unintentional as it sometimes is) is always a bad thing; you can do great harm in seemingly harmless ways. Proverbs 28:21

Sincerely,
Us

Jaime Elwer

j.l.elwer lives in a small rural town with her husband, four imperfectly perfect children, a cat-like dog, and the infamous crick cat