Wednesday, January 14, 2009
The Unexpected Sandwich Generation
As with many other people my age, I’ve recently gone from being a member of the glorious, perhaps infamous, Baby Boom Generation to being a member of the Sandwich Generation. I spent some time in this generation 15 years ago when my mother was terminally ill and I’m back in it again with my mother-in-law. We still have four children living at home and now we also have my mother-in-law living with us. I have spent the morning sitting by her bedside – talking with her, reading to her and listening to a CD of her own mother’s piano music. It’s been a tough morning, but just as we revel in the opportunity to care for our children, I am also finding the act of sitting here, caring for my mother-in-law, to be an opportunity to be relished. Being sandwiched between generations is, for sure, a tough ordeal, but the chance to help my husband’s mother, who has always been a wonderful mother-in-law, brings me, in some strange way, an unusual sense of peace and joy. It is an unexpectedly sweet sandwich.