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  • Nancy Spear

Texting Through the Generations

Grandma texting grandson

I love my mom. She is dedicated to her grandchildren, all seven of them. So much so that she once called me – just shy of panicking – when she realized she had babysat my brother’s kids more times than mine and needed to see them ASAP so that each set of grandkids would receive equal amounts of her attention.

Communicating with her grandkids independent of their parents was always a priority. When they were little, she’d send birthday and Valentine’s cards (even though she and my dad live only a half hour away) because she knew how fun it would be to find an envelope in the mail. They’d get calls: “How was the first day of school?,” “Tell me about camp,” “I heard you lost a tooth.”

Then email presented a new way to reach them. She’d email anything she thought they’d be interested in. A Santa Monica photography exhibit featuring the relationships between wild animals and their humans, a classical guitarist performance at Pepperdine she knew our son would like, and did our daughter see that "Tyler" Swift was going to have a concert.

But soon, the teenagers abandoned their email for texting, an even faster way to communicate.

So what did my 77-year-old mom do? She got an iPhone and started texting (after a few lessons with me). There were a few hiccups – the first four or five letters of each text would be upper case (but I knew she wasn’t yelling – must have just pressed the upper case key too many times). I would always impress upon my kids to reply to the text, and sometimes they would. How many grandmas do you know who text their grandkids?

Now we get to the punch line. Why this is all so good.

Last April, my son received a text: HAPPy Passover!

He replied: Thank you. I’m sorry I don’t know who this is. I lost my contacts.

The reply came: It’s Grandma. When did you start wearing contacts?

That one made it around the whole family. And fortunately, my mom has a good sense of humor.

Stay tuned for an upcoming blog: When My Mom Took a Selfie

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