Nana?? You Gotta Be Kiddin’ Me

It’s true. Being a grandma is even better than being a mom. Ten months, 14 days ago, as of today, I became one. And he is the most handsome, bright, intelligent child known to mankind. And he adores me. There is only one problem. This child has the audacity to have four, count ‘em, four grandmothers. There is his maternal grandmother, his maternal step-grandmother (with whom I have no known, as of yet, problems) then there is “moi”, his sweet, adorable paternal grandmother and then (drum roll) there is his paternal step-grandmother….with whom I do have a problem.

Now, aforementioned step-grandmother is married to my ex husband. I absolutely have no problem with my grandson being with his biological grandfather (under my supervision, of course). The good news here is that his grandfather and “Nana” recently moved to within 50 miles of me, his true grandmother. Actually, and I believe this is a case of being careful what you ask for….I was happy about that. (Normally, a large city of 500K is not big enough for my ex and I to co-exist.) But in this case, I thought it would be so nice for all the children. Kill two birds with one stone, so to speak. Well, there are just too many birds here.

Here’s the deal….now tell me if I’m wrong. She’s 33 years old, a mere 3 years older than the baby’s mom, Gina. She’s way too young to be a grandmother, not to mention way too skinny and cute. And are you ready for this?? She wants the baby, my grand baby to call her “Nana”. Nana??? Isn’t that the dog in Peter Pan?

Here is my story. You be the judge.

A month ago, Ted, my oldest child, GT, his wife, and their adorable son came to visit. Their plan was to spend three days with me and then drive down south and spend 3 days with their father and HER. I, of course, amended that to 3 and 3/4 days with me and 2 and 1/4 days with them. Ted, GT and the baby were to arrive about 11pm at the airport, drive north the 50 miles and be at my home about midnight. I told them to wake me when they arrived. They never did, so I assumed upon awaking that they must have had to stay with their dad and HER since probably their plane was late and it was too late to drive to my meager, unimportant little city. I was fine with that…but I did have to pull out a couple of psych books, light a cigarette and open a bottle of wine.

I was mistaken. I discovered they had come to my house about 2 in the morning. The problem, it seems, was that they felt the necessity to stop by and see the granddad and HER. After all, the granddad and HER were paying for their rent car. Exsqueeze me!….I don’t think that is a very plausible reason, do you?I soon found out that the true reason was that HER had bought all the gadgets one needs for a baby. The brand spankin’ new red, yellow and blue highchair, the brand spankin’ new red, yellow and blue crib, the brand spankin’ new red, yellow and blue toys and they needed to pick them up before they came to my lowly home, which did have a portable crib, albeit bought used. Okay, my feelings were hurt. More old psych books to pour over. I did resist calling my shrink.

I recovered and we had a fantastic visit. Alas, it was time for them to retreat to HER house. (You notice, the ole granddad is sorta out of the picture now.)

Two days later, a Tuesday, the day they were scheduled to leave HER house, I receive a phone message from Ted. “Hey, mom, we’re back home. Give me a call and let me know how you’re doing.” I called him the following Thursday at which time he informed me that they had left my grand baby with HER because the baby had an ear infection and couldn’t fly. I was stunned. I was speechless, but unfortunately, not that speechless. I called him back.

So this is what you are telling me? MY grandson, whose father I birthed, endured broken arms, pneumonia, asthma, dyslexia, various childhood traumas, was left with HER??? Is this what you are telling me, my son? My firstborn??? You are letting HER care for your sick child when I who am a mere 50 miles away could have, should have been with him???”

I have to admit I went ballistic. The pipeline, so well used by my children, buzzed. My daughter, Lissa, called me to say that Ted had called her. My son, Rock called Lissa and said, “Can you believe Mom is acting like this?” Then both Rock and Lissa called me to tell me I was being unreasonable…..unreasonable ??? I think not!! (My youngest child, Deen, however was blissfully unaware of the inter-family trauma occurring. He is student in college. Need I say more?)

Ted had apparently called Lissa and told her that I said “I never want to see you or my grandson again” which is a TOTAL FABRICATION. I think Ted sorta overreacted. Don’t know where he gets that from. Upon reflection, I do think I uttered something about HER coming to California, rather than me for his first birthday since the baby obviously knew HER better than me, his TRUE grandmother.

Fortunately, things have calmed down. Other than HER and me losing any form of communication we might have had, things are pretty much back to normal. My kids have all conspired to ignore my outbursts, we have decided the baby should refer to her as HER rather than “Nana” (well, so far, only my vote is in) and for whatever reason, Ted is paying for me to fly to California to babysit next weekend. Don’t tell me that guilt trips don’t work!