REAL LIFE

Sick Grandmother Couldn't Come To Her Grandson's Baseball Match, So The Match Came To Her

Date April 20, 2018

Grandparents and grandchildren both have much to gain from seeing each other. This bond is quite unlike that between a parent and child and brings a completely different dimension to a child’s upbringing.

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Grandparent-grandkid relationships are very important

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The grandparent-grandchild relationship is instrumental for grandchildren as it is central to perceptions of family connectedness, socialization, values and identity, and general well‐being.

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Usually having more time to spare, grandparents can give uninterrupted attention to their grandchildren in a way parents can't.

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Research conducted over many years by Boston College identified that both grandparents and grandchildren who have a close relationship would have a reduced risk of suffering from depression.

The story of a sick grandmother and her grandson

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Zach Seavers visited his grandmother at her Edwardsville home in March, about two weeks before she died. He leaned into her bed, hugged her goodnight, and told her, "See you tomorrow at the game."

Others in the bedroom thought the 19-year-old right-handed pitcher was hoping against hope — Marilyn Seavers had stage 4 lung cancer. Radiation treatments and immunotherapy had made her much too weak to leave her house but did nothing else to change the prognosis.

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Still, Zach was determined his grandmother was going to see him pitch wearing a college uniform.

When the blinds went up the following afternoon, Marilyn Seavers was greeted with a press box view of her grandson and about a dozen of his gray-and-navy clad teammates, from the Lewis and Clark College baseball team. They had improvised a diamond in her backyard and were in formation for pregame introductions.

Alyssa Seavers, her 16-year-old granddaughter, was among them. Marilyn Seavers was always along for the ride, tracking ballplayers from one tournament or another throughout the United States, making sure uniforms were clean, and always taking time for a game of catch.

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It all ended with her diagnosis last fall. When treatments failed, she was sent home to the care of Southern Illinois Hospice. "She never actually got to see me pitch in college," Zach said. "Whenever I started hearing that things were not good with her health, I thought of what I wanted to do."

Marilyn Seavers was with family when she died at her home on the morning of April 2. She was 78. That last game was a parting wish, both for her and her grandchildren.

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We always need to care about our grandparents

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New data shows that more families are now living in multigenerational households and with grandparents younger than ever, it’s important to establish that deep bond with grandkids at a young age, and especially so, if you live apart.

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Grandchildren represent the future to grandparents. Grandparents want to share their legacy with the grandchildren and enrich the children’s growing up experience with special time spent together.

Grandparents can often talk to their grandchildren in a way the child’s parents can’t because they’re not as emotionally invested in the issue as the primary caregiver.

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They have a wealth of knowledge gained through their lifetime and can share with it children as they grow. There’s even been research to suggest that people who spend time with their grandchildren are less prone to some diseases.

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