I have been writing poems and short stories for years, some of which I have published independantly. I also blog. Writing is a loved hobby.
“Sometimes our grandmas and grandpas are like grand-angels.”
— Lexie Saige
Grandparents, The Wise
Grandparents are some of the wisest people around. Perhaps it is because they have lived long and experienced life in all the ways which matter. So it is that the grandparents would share their life lessons in hopes that their family will benefit from them, and live a better life.
My grandfather died several years ago at the grand old age of ninety-eight. We were hoping he would hold on until he hit 100 years at least, but the Good Lord loved him and called him home, so that at least was a comfort to his family. My grandmother still lives, she's in her nineties as well, and God willing, He grants her a few more years at least, as He wills.
I remember growing up with my grandparents wise sayings, teaching and guiding us. Even my parents, uncles, aunts and various family members profited from the wise sayings of our grandparents. Some of their teaching and sayings stay true throughout the years, and are being passed down from generation to generation.
Here, in no particular order, are some of the more memorable and inspirational quotes from my wise grandparents.
Grandparents Wise Quotes
1) "Don't slouch. You'll grow old before your time".
Kids everywhere like to slouch when they sit. It's as if their spine is made of jelly. i certainly liked to slouch when I parked my behind on a chair. If I ever slouched in the vicinity of my grandma, however, she would immediately snap out, "Sit up straight. Don't slouch, You're not a worm. Do you want to be like me now, so bent you can hardly sit up straight, or even stand straight? This is why I am bend now, because I slouched." That may sound a bit harsh to people unfamiliar with her ways, but that's love. Also, she did take advantage of her old age to exaggerate a bit when teaching us. It's part of her humor. It's also quite effective when she presented the 'evident' before her targeted audience, ha! I still slouch sometimes, but I remember her saying every other day.
2) "Respect others, and they will respect you".
This is true, more often than not. Everyone wants to be respected. It is only reasonable to deduce that when you give respect, than you get it back. My grandfather was one of the most respected elders in our community before his death. People listened to him and took his sayings to heart.
3) "Always be polite and kind. Sometimes people are not like that, but that doesn't mean that you should let them dictate your behavior. Be more. Be examplary. Be the reason they want to change for the better."
There was an incident when a neighbor of my grandparents took to disliking my grandfather because my grandfather was well-respected in our community. This neighbor, who was my grandpa's schoolmate, began to bad-mouth him, and tried to sabotaged my grandpa's properties any way he could. One day, the man stole something from my grandpa, but another man saw him and reported him to my grandpa. Long story short, my grandpa called this man before the community's elders, as was my grandpa's right. He had the witness, and his words was respected. Besides, the other man had a bad reputation, of his own doing and sayings. In the end, the man confessed, and he should have been penalized quite heavily. However, my grandpa exhibited kindness and said solemnly, as was his ways, "I just want you to stop being unkind or bothering myself and my family. I don't like calling you out before others like this, I have sympathy for your wife and children, even if you don't have the same for my family. However, this has gone on long enough. I don't want you to pay anything, if the elders agree. However, from now on, you will stop stealing, stop sabotaging properties, stop bad-mouthing anyone, not just me, and stop being an all-around annoyance. Start being an upstanding member of this community. Your family deserves to have a husband and a father whom they can depend on."
Well, that man stopped being all up in my grandpa's business. When my grandpa passed away, he went to his wake, and said, "Your grandfather was kind to me. I remember that."
4) "You're my family. Of course I will give things to you."
When she was well, health-wise, my grandma kept a garden. She planted vegetables which she will then hand out to us and my aunts and uncles. When my mom said once, "Mom, please don't tire yourself out gardening just to give most of the produce to us. We will be fine. Keep yourself well." My grandma would scoff and said what she said, above. She will even said, "Don't be silly. Stop telling me to be generous with my family. Who else will I give out things to if not to you all?" Grandparents are like that, they give things to their children and grandchildren. Some grandparents will even spoil their grandchildren by buying toys and treats for them. As they say, "How else will I spend my money, hmm? It's not like I'm going to need it when I die."
5) "Marry well. It doesn't matter how rich your husband could be, or how beautiful your wife. Marry someone who will give you a happy and stable home".
Well, people tend to romanticize marriage, and rightly so, when one falls in love and have their romance. It's like a perfect marriage package. But my grandparents' generation didn't always have that. Most marriages were arranged by their parents, and many were marriages of convenience. Both were not necessarily a bad thing, even if the couple's choice was largely out of their hands, initially. But my grandparents were blessed in that their parents required that they liked each other before they were matched. Their love and dedication grew from that, and their marriage was well-blessed. In arranging their marriage, their respective parents didn't want an abusive or self-absorbed spouse for their child; they wanted a partner and a friend. It is good advice to give, which serves well even now.
“Young people need something stable to hang on to — a culture connection, a sense of their own past, a hope for their own future. Most of all, they need what grandparents can give them.”
— Jay Kesler
6) "Listen to us old people. We remember how things are, our culture, the good things of our people. Let us teach them to you, pass it down. Don't let the good part of our people die away."
I remember reading, a while back, a young person complained, "I hate my people. We don't have any culture. I wish I was Asian or African. Anything but my people." Well, she said a lot more, and honestly, I thought she was wrong. All people have a culture; but sometimes, in looking at another's culture, we think that ours do not amount to much. A familiar thinking, and I remember thinking this about my people when I was much younger, except mine went a bit like, "I wish I can forget my culture, they're so....primitive. I wish I could have that other culture." Well, turned out I deeply regretted such thought once I grew out of that thinking. My people are rich in good culture: respect, politeness, generosity, help, kindness, brave, among others. When a young person in my family speak rudely or disrespectfully, especially to his or her elder, my parents (who are now grandparents themselves), will admonish, "Do not speak like that to your elder. This is not our way to be rude. Speak respectfully. We will still listen, in fact much more."
Our elders taught us that we don't have to be combative or aggressive to get our ways. We don't have to be rude or disrespectful to get our opinions across. We can fight for our rights, but that does not mean stepping on or kicking down other people who stand in our way. We can win enemies over to our side; apart from that we can vanquish them kindly but effectively. We can be poor but be a proud, dignified people. We may not live in castles or even modern houses, but we still carry ourselves as a respected people. And so on. Our grandparents and elders taught us this. Good sayings.
There are more inspirational quotes from my grandparents, which in my personal experience, have served me well. There are some which I don't always agree with, but I have learnt to not outright dismiss them. They are always beneficial in many circumstances, tried and proven, lasting the test of time.
Truly, grandparents are very wise. If you still have yours, living and well, then ask for their advice. They will inspire you. What are your favorite quotes from your grandparents?
© 2019 Lynne Samuel