What to be Called?

Whoopi Goldberg became a grandmother at 34 and is now a great-grandmother. Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief of “Vogue” magazine, has three grandchildren. Meryl Streep became a grandmother in 2019 (Insider). And, yes, now I am one too. What an extraordinary club! But what to be called? Vanity suggests something cute and sassy like Mimi or Yaya or Gigi, but Grandma, oh that has so many connotations that might suggest baking or needlepoint, or at least level-headedness, right? Might I still be in a nightclub at midnight or be dashing around the south of France or even, dare I say, unsure about my future with a moniker like Nana? Didn’t we all think those matriarchs, a bit round in the middle, coiffed grey hair into a bun, always in an apron, knew their way around a kitchen, and knew for certain what their tomorrow would bring? Seriously, those names and every association with them is weighty. How can I step into those shoes and feel they fit while there is so much I am still learning about life? Grandmother? Feels tight.

This little guy just arrived this week and suddenly I am at a loss as to my title, well no, not the title, I am so proud to be a Grand Mother, but the name. I do wish he would utter something as adorable as he is, and that would be that. Like Bunny or Giggy or Zaza or Honey. I’d take it. Sadly, he will not get around to naming me for a while, like years from now, so what to do in the meantime? Naming myself is daunting. What to be called by a little one before he can even keep his eyes focused on his own momma or daddy?

I have a feeling this little guy will come up with something just fine. Until then, I’m pretty grateful he’s here, with much hope and promise rising up with his every breath. And for now, I guess I will wear the title with all the pride granted those Grand folks.

22 thoughts on “What to be Called?

  1. Congratulations! This just made my day, week, and month. What a lucky grandbaby to have such a loving person who is taking the grandparent naming responsibility seriously…. Most important he knows you will be there for him! That’s the gift!

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  2. My grandson was calling everyone and everything Nana before he was 18 mos. So I grabbed it. No matter what happens, I said, I’m Nana. I love it. It doesn’t feel like an old-fashioned moniker when he says it. Hi Nana. By Nana. It’s the best!

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  3. I love this! Sooooo beautiful the pics too — and the love you have for your baby grandson radiates throughout. I share your thoughts on the grandmother moniker — that these stand-ins like mimi, nana etc used by some have always seemed to me to be vain, but it’s easy to judge when one hasn’t reached the stage yet heh heh. I adore what you suggest, that the child names you (love “Bunny or Giggy or Zaza” – such cute names) and in the meantime, I’d be choosing the standard Granny or Grandma (I hope at least! But yeah, the closer I get to the possibility I admit it feels yikes!) – or let my own kids (the grandkids’) parents decide.

    My grandma started as “Granny” (what my parents called her, maybe she’d helped them decide, I don’t know) then Grandma and Gamgam and so on — whatever sounded most beautiful or ‘cool’ (in the teenage years) to us kids. I don’t think she cared much what we called her, as long as it was respectful/loving, tbh — she was so busy being an awesome grandmother, spoiler, unspoiler, teacher, appreciater, putting our hair in curlers (this was the seventies and eighties lol) — whenever we saw her, in the midst of her own busy life… all those good things.

    Anyway, I’ve rambled enough. :)) Heartfelt congrats, and thanks for sharing your beautiful post!

    Liked by 1 person

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