Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Grandparenting Book Review: "Unconditional Love"







































This is a sponsored post for which I have been compensated with a free product sample 
                                           in exchange for my honest review.

I try to be the perfect grandparent. Encouraging comments from my three daughters (mothers to the ten most wonderful children alive 😊) uplift me, and I greedily soak them up. But there's always room for improved behavior, frank and fresh perspective, and honest camaraderie with other women who harbor the same self doubts that occasionally plague me. Do I do enough for my family? Too much? Do the children recognize my respect for rules and limits set by their parents? Does my behavior model charitable morality? Will I be remembered well? Am I part of a problem or a welcomed solution to it?

What a treasury of experiences, ideas, and answers I found in Jane Isay's easy-to-read, hard-to-put-down volume, Unconditional Love - A guide to navigating the joys and challenges of being a grandparent today.

Drawn in from page one by Jane's warm, accepting style, I read for validation in areas I find myself excelling. "How to Lure Them Back Home, and Why" found me patting myself on the back for installing an in-house cousins' lending library and opening my doors to "Grandma's Drop-In Crafts Days." On page 133, I smiled at the way "Kimberly's" in-laws made their (several hours away!) home a welcoming weekend magnet for the two-career parents of their first grandchild. Creative solutions are out there, and this book is full of them! Long distance grandparenting is a common reality these days (four of my own currently live states away) and that's adequately addressed with tips on coping both during and in-between visits.

The side of being a practical asset to the family from newborn arrival through distant teenage years, to the "coming back" phase is gracefully coupled with the unique impact grandparents can have on a child's emotional and spiritual growth. I need to work on this area. Jane encourages me to share myself via childhood memories - tales from the days of corded party-line telephones, clunky metal strap-on skates, black and white television, and the vivid image of mom pinning laundry to a backyard clothesline. "Children are stronger and more self-reliant when they are nested in their family history..." declares Jane on page 75, commencing a chapter full of suggestions for arming grandchildren with a rich sense of belonging to those whom they love.

I left Unconditional Love with suggestions, solutions, and a group of understanding friends. The many grandmother interviewees quoted by Jane travel the same road I do now. Our problems, concerns, triumphs, and successes may be unique to each family, but the hoped for outcome is universal. We wish to contribute value to a generation of confident, happily fulfilled children who will someday look back at us as ideal models for the nurture of their own grandchildren!

Find Jane Isay's Unconditional Love, published 2018 by HarperCollins, at the following vendors:
Amazon
Books-A-Million
Barnes and Noble
IndieBound
Powell's Books
iTunes