"Whatever you do, do NOT tell men that you are a grandmother," the matchmaker advised me. "It's the kiss of death!"
But as I leaned over my tiny grandson, born just last week, I knew that wild horses couldn't keep me mum about the mesmerizing feeling that flooded me as I watched my sleeping grand-baby's tiny pursed lips, or saw my son, now a father, gently stroke his sleeping child's cheek with a look of pure love. Add to that, my own mother, tears in her eyes, as she watched me watch them--and I found a moment that simply MUST be shared with the world.
I wonder how reiterating my joy will play among the men I meet who are my age and older. The ones who say they find me fascinating and they would love to know me better -- if ONLY I were as young as I look--just a few years younger so they could start a family with me. My heart does go out to them. They never had children of their own. They each have stories and countless reasons for their childlessness. The likelihood is that in their lifetime, they will never witness their biological son stroking their grandson's cheek, but far worse, they are probably going to go through that lifetime both childless and companionless. They will continue to scour the singles scenes, myriad parties and mixers, as the age gap between them and the fertile female population continues to widen, ever hoping that they will find someone to bear them a child at the age of 49 , 55 or 62.
"There is a reason to why men prefer younger women," writes someone on the dating site I frequent. "Let's state the obvious. As men we have few concerns of our own when choosing a mate. The first is children. Obvious the younger the woman is the more healthy children she could bring into the union."
But at what age will older men finally give up the dream? At what age will men say, I may not have those children I always dreamed about? And even if I were to find the perfect relationship with someone willing and able to bear those children, I may never live long enough to play soccer with my children or to see them graduate college. And the chances are, I'll never live long enough to witness my children's children. At what point do I instead, look for a compatible mate. Someone who remembers the Beatles, appreciates life's moments, and with whom I can ride through life's roller coaster with, into the golden years. Someone who will make me a part of her life and share her children and grandchildren with me.
But, no, the matchmaker said. Don't ask, don't tell. Don't let them know your age. Don't tell them about your pride in your progeny. At least not at first. Let them get to know you -- have them fall in love with your warm smile and intelligence. Let them love you for you.
But don't you understand - Now I AM a grandmother. That IS me. I'm a grandmother - even though I don't look the part. And I love my grandson. He is the crown jewel in my tiara, as are each of my children. Is there really a good reason for not wearing my beautiful diamonds with pride?
So I amended my profile on the dating site and wrote about my pride and my love for my grandson and my children. These are life moments that matter - that define me as a full-fledged woman and as a human being. If a man has an aversion to dating a loving, caring woman who has, to her credit, raised a child to be a tender, loving father, and who is proud to write about it, well, he is not a man I would ever want to marry. Matchmakers be damned!