In the playground of that bond shared only with a grandparent, the kids we imagine we know find ways of revealing aspects of themselves they can't with us, in the safety of a gaze we're not yet wise enough to cast.
Older Americans are an able and critical segment of our great society, who, through their active wisdom and engagement have much to offer. They can help create a more prosperous future for the most vulnerable among us.
Our seniors are a national treasure, a Fort Knox of key life lessons and a precious link to our traditions and culture. They deserve to be rewarded with much more than cheap early dinners and a discount at the movies.
When you grab that stack of books to share with a child, you may want to try some of my favorite grandparent books -- classics and newbies, but all beautifully illustrated. And remember: don't let a narrow definition of grandparent slow you down.
My grandmothers were born in 1927 and 1930. When the woman from the Bronx passes away, it will most likely be announced on the front page of the New York Times. When the woman from Paramus dies, it will be noted on page 34 of the Pascack Press.
There are more grandparents than ever, and more of them are directly caring for their grandchildren than at any time in our recent history. And yet -- no parades, no telethons, not even a zero-down, interest-free auto sale.