22 good reasons for relocation: Reason # 7 Grandparents 24/7
This post is dedicated with love to all the grandparents who are far away from us, their kids and grandchildren
The difficulty of being distanced from our relatives (especially grandparents) is enormous and arises in many posts and in many conversations with my trainees. The construction of the small family nest outside the country of origin raises questions about the connection to the extended family.
With all the difficulties, I want to show that there are also benefits to this situation.
Visits. Many times when our relatives arrive they stay for a few days. They become an integral part of the family for the period they stay with us. The connection to children is stronger.
When my children arrive to their grandparents they are given a place of honour. The "Belgians" are coming. We plan all kind of things together, trips, joint events. The family takes time to be with us.
Time. Just take time to be together. My father for example taught my daughter to ride a bike on one of our trips to the Netherlands.
Stay in full awareness. The time we are together is allotted. No matter how long we have been in the country my mother always says "you have not been here at all". When we are with the family we try very hard to capture the moments so the experience is "in the here and now". Experience the encounter in full.
Food. When the children come to Israel or when grandparents come here, the children get a culinary experience. Everything they did not eat during the time we did not see each other deserves a place of honour in the kitchen. The children develop memories and longings for food and certain tastes (I tried to prepare the same according to the recipe ... I never get the same thing). Before arriving they make a list of things they would like to eat.
Excursions. In visits we create new, interesting and fun experiences with the children. After each trip we make a photo album and send it to grandparents as well - so we remember the beautiful moments we spent together.
Calls. I discovered that when my children come to Israel to be with the family, it is very important for them to sit down and talk to the grandparents. Tell about their lives, share.
Farewells. Farewell is not an easy thing for many of us. The children learn to separate. Say hello sometimes in the creative way of making an album or a photo or a letter. Our children know it is temporary and that they will meet again.
In the digital age, children learn to keep in touch with relatives through social networks. They talk to them and are an active part of the family groups.
There are very many ways to facilitate separation. One of the ways I recommend it to frequently visit the country of origin, if possible, and have your family come to your place. This reduces the distance and facilitates separations.
How do you deal with the difficulty of separation?
Dr. Efrat Tzadik - Coach for personal development
Find the home away from home
Photo: one of our trips with the grandparents in Switzerland.