I recently went on a day trip to Alcatraz with my daughter, son-in-law and grandkids; Jared and Leah. It was fun and there was the usual banter/teasing and laughing that is common in our family. It was a great day. Coming home I was driving and something came up that turned on the valve of 'politics' - well, knowing that my son-in-law and I are far apart on our beliefs I wasn't in a good place (driving the Bay Bridge at 4pm) to state my opinions, etc., so I said 'let's just drop it.' Not wanting to 'get into it' with him about my love for Obama and the liberal side of life. No problem, done deal. I did however realize that my grandson was most definitely wanting to get things going and it really gave me pause later. How do I want my grandchildren to view me as well as my ideals, thoughts and morals? How important really is it that I feel strongly about certain political ideals? The ironic thing of this is that I raised my daughter to be just exactly as her husband is. I was pretty much on the same page with him with my religious and political ideas. Although I think I may have been a tad bit more tolerant on certain things but never the less I was once a conservative, born-again Christian right wing. Now, I am opposite. I do understand where he comes from and why he feels he way he does. Even though I don't agree with him does not mean that I don't respect him or stand by his right to have his own opinions. It is certainly not worth my grandchildren seeing any kind of riff between their Dad and Gma. The truth is I think he is a fantastic Husband and Father. I couldn't be happier that my daughter married this wonderful guy. She is happy - the kids are happy, what more could a Mother possibly want for her child? That's it - I want my children to be happy PERIOD.
I would like to think that he and I really have the basics in common - loving, compassionate, honest and kindhearted. When I have needed help, he has been there and I have no doubt that he will always be if possible. And in turn I will help them out in ways that I can.
As for the grandchildren I know that it is none of my concern what their parents are teaching them and it would be wrong of me to contradict what they are taught in their home. I just hope that I can be a living example of my beliefs and ideals. Maybe the best lesson for them is to see that we can all have different ideas about how things should go but we can also all live together peacefully in our differences. Wouldn't that be an ideal world?