Just a little fun this weekend before Mother’s Day. I hope that you will enjoy this. Just remember that it is an older post, so my style of writing might be a little different.
Originally posted 6-6-13
The other day I was driving to work and I was thinking about the word “grandmother.” I wondered when that phrase originated. I honestly don’t think it started in the old testament, did it? Maybe you can correct me, but I think the first time the word is mentioned in the Bible is in Timothy when Paul mentioned Timothy’s grandmother, Lois. Interesting.
So then I got to thinking about my own paternal grandmother. I know that my dad called her “mother” and sometimes “mom” and I called her “grandma”. I am not sure what the rest of the grandkids called her (let me know if it’s something different, please). But I wonder what she would have said if one of the grandkids had called her “meemaw” or “granny”? I have a feeling she would have found it slightly disrespectful. Grandma was very formal and liked traditional names. (Dad was the only boy who didn’t have a biblical name. But I digress.) In Germany, where my mom is from, the grandmother from the family is known as “Oma” and at least one person who responded on my FB page said she can attest to that. There really is no variation to that name. Every woman old enough to be a grandmother enjoys being called “Oma” because that is tradition.
I remember an aunt (who shall remain nameless for this post) say that she didn’t want to be called “grandma” because it made her feel old. I can understand that. I don’t like being “miss” one day and the next day be “ma’am”, but that’s the way it is. There is no guile in the term, it is a term of respect. And I believe my grandmother and all those who came before her believe the same way. I wonder how many would roll over in their graves if they heard other grandmothers referred to as “Mamaw,” “Grammie,” “Nana,” “Memaw,” “Granny,” or even be referred to by their first name. Now, I’m not saying it’s wrong or anything. Truly. I’m just wondering when we, as a culture, got to the point where we are so informal with regard to those who have earned every single grey hair on their heads, whether they color it or not.
As for me. Well, I many never be known as “Grandma” or even “Oma” to anyone. After all, my own children don’t even refer to me as “mom” anymore. But hopefully I will continue to be “ma’am” to a generation who still has an ounce of respect to give to his/her elders. Although, I must say that I am more than ready to be a grandmother to anyone who is willing to let me spoil them….and I don’t even care if they call me “Grammie Petra.”