I Have 58 Grandchildren

Yes, I am the grandma of 58 children. I became a grandma for the 58th time more than 10 days ago. 58 times! Hahaha… Can you imagine that? It is true though. The oldest is 25 years old and the youngest is just a few days old. That’s a lot of children! They are collectively called the third generation of our clan. I belong to the first.

My mom and dad married young. They have 6 children. We are the first generation in our clan. I am the youngest. My siblings married young as well. So they have children who are near my age. They are the second generation. My oldest niece and oldest nephew are only 4 years younger than me. Some of the second generation married young too. Their children are the third generation in our clan.

My mom and dad were our elders. There are 6 of us in the first generation. We are the parents. There are 33 in the second generation. They are the nephews and the nieces. And there are 58 in the third generation. They are the grandchildren. My older brother and I do not have grandchildren of our own… yet. So in my clan alone, there are 97 blood relatives. Add all the in-laws (sons-in-law and daughters-in-law) and you are looking at nearly 150 people. We have huge family parties.

So back to the 58th grandchild I had a few days ago. Technically, he is my great-nephew. I am his great-aunt. That should be the correct label. But in the Philippines, it is generalized. If your siblings have grandchildren, automatically, you are a grandparent too. I don’t mind. I was 12 years old when I was first called grandma by someone way older than me so I am used to be called grandma.

Many grandparents do not want to be called or labelled as grandparent because their reasoning is they will get old or they don’t like their age to be obvious when they are called grandparent. For me, I am honored to be called a grandparent or a great-aunt. It means I am blessed to be alive at this age to be called such. Also, I find it more respectable to be called grandma or auntie. I don’t know. Maybe it is just me.

So back to the 58th grandchild again… hahaha… too much topics that get in the way of his story. This baby’s parents informed and updated me about him since he was 3 months in his mom’s tummy until he was born. I feel special because I get to see photos of him on my personal message instead of on group chats or on timelines.

This baby is my older sister’s first grandchild so imagine how all the attention is focused on him at the moment. I asked my sister how it feels to be a grandma for the first time and she said it is like when you have your first baby. Times full of awe!

I was chatting to this baby’s mom and I was telling her how she needs to use socks day and night no matter how hot the weather is. I also told her to drink lukewarm water (hot water cooled down, not hot water added with cold water) especially during the first month after giving birth. I forgot to add that she should be wearing jacket as well. These beliefs are old wives’ tale but through the years, many mothers have proven these to be effective in avoiding back pain in the future. There are even food to avoid. New mothers follow different methods to hasten their recovery.

This baby is fully spoiled with love and attention at this moment. He deserves it. I told the mom that the baby will grow up to be as good as all his uncles and aunties. The mom said she hopes so. I told her that he will be. My husband always says, “An apple tree cannot bear a banana.” (“Haan nga agbunga ti mansanas ti saba.”). It means whatever the tree is, that is how the fruit will be. (“No anya ti puon, isu ti bunga,” innayon na pay. In Tagalog, “Kung ano ang puno, yun din ang bunga.”)

The baby’s parents are very good. With God’s guidance, they will provide a solid foundation and instill great core values to this baby and he will grow up well.

To this baby in the photo, we thank the Lord for giving you to our family. Everyone in our clan rejoice in your birth. You bring joy to us especially at this time.

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,

The fruit of the womb is a reward.

Psalms 127:3

To my adorable 58th grandson, this is my prayer for you, balong.

Dear Lord, thank You for blessing us with our 58th grandchild. Thank You that both mother and son are healthy despite the difficulties during the childbirth. Thank You for keeping them safe amidst this pandemic. He truly brings joy to our clan.

Father, please bless the baby with good health. Please bless him every step of his way as he grows up and walks with You. Father, I pray for safety and protection for the baby at all times. May he grow up well in every milestone and stage of his life.

Lord God, I pray for the baby’s parents, grandparents, uncles, aunties and all relatives to shower him with the love and care. Please bless the baby’s mom and dad with wisdom and guidance so that they can be the kind of parents that You intended them to be when You gifted them with their first baby.

I pray for the mom that she may recover from her childbirth pains fast.

Thank You, Lord, for enabling my nephew to be the head of his own family. May he always look up to You as he leads his young family in Your way. Thank You that my nephew and my niece-in-law are now experiencing what unconditional love and indescribable joy truly mean. In Jesus’ name, I speak life and blessing upon them.

To my 58th grandchild, I claim and declare these powerful words for you:

24 ‘May the Lord bless you

    and protect you.

25 May the Lord smile on you

    and be gracious to you.

26 May the Lord show you His favor

    and give you His peace.’

Numbers 6:24-26

In Jesus’ mighty name. Amen.

To the new baby in our clan: love, hugs and prayers from the whole clan.

To everyone who read this blog, thanks. I pray blessings to be upon your family.

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Published by Zhen

I am Zhen. I am a Christian, a mother of 3 wonderful boys and an educator. My family and I live in Melbourne, Australia. I am passionate about faith, motherhood, family, friendship and education. I am happy to share my thoughts, ideas and opinions to others. I enjoy writing, reading, listening to music and photography. I like watching dramas, ocean waves, sunrise and sunset. I can be a friend, a confidante and an adviser if you need one.

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