Grandma Is That You?
My first experience seeing my grandchild during the early stages of the COVID-19 situation was at a small family college graduation party. We held it outdoors and had enough tables set up for adequate social distancing from those who did not live together. It was at this party that our 20 month old grandchild saw my husband and I in masks for the first time and he was confused. It broke my heart that he didn't recognize us and I quickly removed my mask so he could see my smile. I received a subtle smile in return while confusion and hesitancy still held his normal excitement at bay. To put it lightly, my grandson was not amused with the mask requirement. In fact he was put off by the situation entirely - see the photo of him and I as evidence!
My heart goes out to those grandparents who cannot travel right now to see their precious grandchildren. I know for many physical contact has also been eliminated. Grandparenthood is just not the same without hugs and cuddles. This has been a trying time for us all. I am heartened by those who have used their creativity to bridge the COVID-19 created gaps, while still keeping everyone safe in doing so. Grandchildren have now become familiar with Zoom or FaceTime family gatherings to share time with grandparents. The difficult part of these virtual interactions is keeping your grandchild's attention. Other families have bridged the COVID-19 physical restrictions gap by putting clear plastic tarps with plastic arm holes taped to them for grandparent/grandchild hugs. If there is a will, there is always a way!
Don't let the current COVID-19 situation keep you from interacting with your grandchild(ren). Check back to this website on a new section currently being created to see great ideas on how to meaningfully engage with your grandchild(ren) remotely or virtually during this pandemic.