“The reason grandparents and grandchildren get along so well is that they have a common enemy.” – Sam Levenson
My daughter is now almost 28 months old, out of which she has spent about 10 months in all at my parents’ home at Visakhapatnam because of my husband’s business trips post her birth. Due to this reason, my daughter is extremely comfortable with my parents and I can very well notice that their presence is always a great stimulation for her. She is very attached to me and the only person I can confidently leave her with for a few hours is my mother. Knowing that she would care for my child just like I do gives me a sense of security and they have great fun together.
Whenever we visit my parents or they visit us, my mother voluntarily takes over my daughter’s responsibility entirely because she loves spending time with her and that strengthens their bond. I utilize this time to catch up on my sleep and complete my pending writing related work and other tasks. I believe spending time at grandparents’ abode is one of the best ways to enjoy summer time to the fullest. The unshackled, uninhibited enjoyment that kids experience with grandparents is precious and valuable for their growth. So this summer, we are here with my parents at their residence and my daughter is having the time of her life.
My parents live in an independent bungalow which has a beautiful garden that my mother takes pride in maintaining. The garden houses a variety of flowering plants and my mother loves growing fruits and vegetables in it, with the help of an appointed gardener. The bungalow also has a huge, spacious balcony which is nearly as big as a terrace and is flanked by large trees. There are a number of trees and plants sprawling along the lush green locality and the vibrancy of the bright coloured flowers adds splendour to the area.
As a daily ritual, my daughter, accompanied by her Nani, goes down to the garden twice a day. She loves being in the midst of the natural beauty of the place. She plays in the mud, helps her Nani water the plants and learns about the different flowers and home grown vegetables. She comes back all messy and muddled, but I do not act as a deterrent and let her take pleasure in her free play. She also keeps running around the house and goes berserk in the company of my parents in the balcony which has a rough surface. Every evening, she visits the amusement park in the vicinity of the house which is her unrestricted fun and frolic time, while my mother watches over her. In all these activities, there are evident associated risks of catching an infection or getting bruised or falling sick due to the heat. Hence, I take certain precautionary measures to keep my daughter protected so that she can continue having a wonderful time with her beloved grandparents.
Use of sunscreen – I apply a mild, herbal sunscreen lotion generously on my daughter’s skin which acts as a barrier between her skin and the scorching heat. The summer heat makes the child’s delicate skin prone to sunburns and other skin issues which can cause discomfort. Application of sunscreen has helped me successfully prevent these skin problems from occurring in case of my daughter.
Keeping her well hydrated – It is very important to keep the kids well hydrated during the summer season, primarily because they sweat a lot. I ensure that my daughter’s fluid intake is adequate by offering her fluids like water, juices, coconut water, buttermilk and other beverages at regular intervals. This leaves her feeling fresh and energized throughout the day.
Hygiene – To combat the effects of the infections that can crop up as a result of all the liberated play, taking care of hygiene becomes all the more essential. This is something we have been particular about since the beginning and now my daughter herself rushes to the washbasin after a play session without being urged to do so. She thoroughly washes her hands using the Dettol Handwash with little assistance from an elder in the family. Also, on certain occasions, if the situation so demands, I bathe her instead of just washing her hands after adding a few drops of Dettol antiseptic liquid to the bathing water.
Use of mosquito patches – Mosquito patches are tremendously effective in keeping the mosquitoes at bay which are quite common in a place like where my parents live. Since the time I have started using the patches, I have never been concerned about mosquito bites when my daughter is away playing in the park or garden, where she is more susceptible to the bites.
Appropriate Clothing – While most of the time my daughter is donned in her summer clothes, I make sure she wears a legging when she is sprinting and prancing around in the balcony. So even if she trips or has a fall, she doesn’t get injured and the legging acts as a protective layer of clothing for her legs.
Handy First Aid Kit – I always keep a first aid kit handy which contains all basic medicines, lotions, cotton, Dettol antiseptic liquid etc. This helps to attend to any kind of minor cut or wound immediately. Also, bungalows having a garden and greenery around are home to certain insects, hence the lotion prescribed by the paediatrician for an insect bite is also a part of our first aid kit.
It is pure bliss for the mother in me to see such an amazing bond develop between people who matter the most in my life. It gives me deep satisfaction to witness my parents and my daughter create evergreen memories together. We are truly blessed to have them in our life and they make me realize that the love and warmth that is conferred upon a child by grandparents is unmatched. The process of learning with them is natural and the priceless knowledge lasts a lifetime. It is time to book our return tickets from here and I will have to do that with a heavy heart. We both will be missing my parents terribly, but am glad we had a fulfilling trip.