Every baby needs a grandma!
Every family needs a coach!

Our Stories

Gail Leventhal’s Story

December 17, 1969 was a momentous day! My twins were born and my life would be changed forever! But three months later, my life was to change again! I dislocated my knee cap and had to be on crutches…with twins! That took some real ingenuity.

My husband, who was working on a production deadline, was away most of the time, and all he was really able to do was thumbtack baggies onto my crutches in order to transport baby essentials around the house! Then, to top that off, my doctor read me the riot act for not staying off my leg, which he reassured me would not heal until I did. Right…and I’m suppose to do that with infant twins! What would I do? Where was my mother when I needed her? She was 3,000 miles away in New York.

In order to get off my leg and get some help, I had to fly cross-country on crutches with 3-month old twins. It was an experience I will never forget! Finally, after a very long flight with NO help from the flight attendants, I finally reached New York and I cried with joy and relief when I saw my mother. Everybody needs a grandma!

Grandmas2Go would have been a god-send to me if it had existed back then…but now I’m grateful to belong to this group and can give back to other young families that need a grandma!


Steve and His Two Sons

Not all families are at risk because of drugs. Life circumstances can impact a family. Steve was working in construction when he suddenly found himself with full custody of his two boys, an 18 month old and a newborn. He quit work to take care of his sons, a job he was not prepared for. He was stressed out, sleep deprived, worried about finances and taking care of two babies 24/7 – by himself. The Healthy Families counselor asked if he’d be interested in having a Grandma2Go. He was! The boys are thriving under the loving care of a super dad and two loving Grandmas2Go.

When social services informed Steve that there were no more funds for him to stay home with his babies, his Grandma2Go helped him write a resume and fill out job applications. She even went along to interview a potential daycare provider. Working, raising two babies, finding and affording good childcare are challenges he faces daily. It’s not easy and it is definitely exhausting! But it’s also the most rewarding job in the world! (Especially when you have a little extra help!) Steve is proud to be a role model for other dads. And he appreciates having Grandmas2Go in his life!


Rob and Rachel

Rob and Rachel struggled in and out of treatment trying to kick their meth addiction. Their babies were under three, and the trauma and upheaval in their lives was affecting the girls. Child Welfare removed the children from the storage unit where the family was living, and over the next nine months the girls were placed in three different foster homes. The judge was ready to terminate parental rights to let these precious little girls be adopted. That’s when it hit Rob and Rachel. They loved their daughters and wanted to get them—and their own lives—back. Addiction is a nasty disease but with other service workers, we wrapped our arms around this family and supported them in their journey. It worked. A year later, Rob and Rachel got married and their daughters were the flower girls! Today Bette and Mariana are in elementary school; and mom is a Peer Counselor helping other parents on that difficult journey to sobriety. I still see them and am so proud of the hard work they have done and continue to do. They changed their lives for the sake of their children, and got their own lives back in the bargain.


Gramma and Me

It was 57 years ago, when Gramma passed away, but it seems like yesterday. I was 12 years old. I can still remember everything about her, from her grey-white, beautifully styled, hair to her gnarled fingers. I can still see her knees, really big, and round…of course, I didn’t know anything about arthritis back then.

She was in my life from the day my adopted parents brought me home from the hospital. Gramma lived with us and from my first memories, she was simply the BEST!

My daddy died from leukemia when I was 5 years old and my mom instantly became the bread-winner for our little family of three. So, it was gramma and me from the time I first opened my eyes in the morning until she put me to bed, always with a story, either her own made-up one about princesses, or from my favorite Mickey Mouse Goes on A Picnic book. (Which I still have waiting to pass it on to my son for my own grandchildren!)

Gramma taught me everything…from making mud pies (but always dressed in a frilly dress…no tom-boy for me!) to making real pies, crust from scratch, of course! She taught me to read and count…and when it was time to go to pre-school (to play with other children), I only wanted to play with gramma.

We had the best time together; I didn’t know she was teaching me to be a survivor, but as the years went by that was certainly what was to happen.

Every baby needs a grandma! More about Gramma and Me next time!