Saturday, November 11, 2006

“MAFFY” advises his Grandma…


Matthew, our second son, was about 4 years old when this picture was taken. He and my mother are obviously engrossed in fixing something. This was a usual thing for them. They were great pals and loved spending time together, especially if it entailed a “mind boggler” that needed to be solved.

A few years later, in 1976, we moved to a different home and our property had a small stream on it. Matt took up the sport of fishing and he couldn’t wait for Grandma to come for a visit so that she could share in his new hobby.

When the time came for that visit we fixed up a nice room in the basement so that mother could have her privacy. It was very cozy and if she wanted to read or take a nap she would just go down to her room. It was also where she would smoke. She knew that neither Dick nor I were smokers and we wouldn’t be too pleased with having the smell in the main house.

She stayed for two weeks and almost every day she and “Maffy” would take off for the stream. They would often take a lunch with them as well as their fishing rods and his little creel box complete with hooks and worms and a special place for Grandma’s cigarettes. I would love to have been privy to their talks. I’m sure they solved many of the problems of his little world, but I had no idea that they were discussing mother’s world, too.

One morning I glanced into Matt’s creel box just before they were to take off for the stream and I realized that mother’s cigarettes were missing. When I asked about it, Matt said, “Oh, didn‘t you know? Grandma doesn’t smoke any more.”

I was absolutely amazed and when I asked mother about it she told me that Matt had tactfully and persistently kept after her until she had no excuses left. She was to live for 20 more years and near the end of her life I asked her if she’d ever smoked again. She seemed shocked at my question. “Of course not,” she said, “I made a promise to Maffy, didn’t I?”

16 Comments:

Blogger gawilli said...

What a good grandma and I bet "Maffy" has some of the best memories ever. I clearly understand the importance of honoring a commitment like that. Last Sunday was the 2nd anniversary for me as a non-smoker. My daughter had asked me to stop, so on her 26th birthday I gave them to her and she threw them out. That was it. By the way, that picture is absolutely wonderful!

5:37 PM  
Blogger Cazzie!!! said...

That is the most gorgeous story. My son was lucky enough to have been able to share the last years of my grandma's life at our own homw. She was put into a horrible nursing home and when my first born came along I couldn';t bare to visit her there so I took her outta there and she lived with us. Her life was sooo happy sharing it with my son.
I would wake her at 7am to take her blood sugar level and give her the insulin she needed. All the time, she would be singing to my baby son and he would coo at her.
I miss her soo much, and so does he. We named our first daughter after her too :)

6:13 PM  
Blogger Anvilcloud said...

What a treasure for everyone, including you I think.

7:08 PM  
Blogger Maya's Granny said...

The focus of their eyes, on the shared project, speaks so elequently of their relationship.

11:15 PM  
Anonymous Claude said...

A lovely story and a lovely picture. How lucky for your son to have shared those precious moments with his grandma.

12:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There's something special about "grammas". I had a special relationship with mine, too. She was a very quiet, religious woman. When she spoke, it was to say something important. Those memories are probably "Maffy's" best.

9:47 AM  
Anonymous milliegarfield said...

What a wonderful story about your mom and Maffy. Two lucky people to have such a beautiful relationship. And what a smart child to be able to get "Grandma to stop smoking!!

8:17 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

Your story touched my heart. I love the photo, it speaks volumes. I am very close to my grandchildren and understand how important a promise is.

4:25 AM  
Anonymous colleen said...

This gave me shivers. What a bond they had! My grandmother died too young (in her 60s) and I still miss her.

6:53 AM  
Blogger Pam said...

Re: your comment on hunting...very interesting. But I wonder if controling a heard is any worse than raising animals for the sole purpose of killing them and eating them. My friends and I discuss this often and it goes round and round.

8:20 AM  
Blogger jen said...

what a lovely grandmum. and such a terrific photo. the grand relationship is like no other.

3:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Beautiful photo and a beautiful story, Ginnie. I wish I had your Mum's willpower. Thank you so much for sharing your precious memories with us all.

Sue x

1:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Ginnie,
That photo is a prize. Your son's curiosity and grandmother's stately gentleness. My mother gave up smoking when my brother, age seven, told her that he would stop sucking his thumb if she would give up smoking. That did the trick.

4:40 AM  
Blogger Ginnie said...

Thanks for all your wonderful comments. Isn't it interesting (no matter how far apart we live and have different backgrounds) how many of us had similar experiences?

6:32 AM  
Blogger Chancy said...

My days and times with my grandchildren are a real treasure and one of the highlights of my life.

Thanks for sharing that photo and sweet grandma,grandson story with us.

5:06 PM  
Anonymous Terri said...

What a wonderful story! And how fortunate for Matthew to have such precious and meaningful memories with his grandmother. Nothing compares to that and I'm sure he treasures them.

6:11 AM  

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