“I am a godmother that is a great thing to be, a godmother. She calls me god for short, that is cute, I taught her that.” –Ellen DeGeneres
Being asked to be a godparent is an honor. In fact, it might just be one of the most pleasant things you will ever feel in the world. In this regard, you can truly say that the parents of your godchild hold you in such high esteem and admiration that they see you as a prospective role model for their son or daughter in the years to come. However, what does it mean to be a godparent, really? Beyond attending the baptismal rites and gracing the baptism with your presence, what is it that you should do? For the average Filipino, being a godparent constitutes as nothing more than being an entity expected to hand out treats and gifts on every significant occasion from birthdays to major milestones in life such as school graduations. However, being a godparent means so much more than just remembering birthdays and handing out Christmas gifts—you actually need to be a presence in your godchild’s life.
Considering that being asked to be a godparent is somewhat of a privilege, it carries with it a certain onus—one which you have the obligation to fulfill. So, what does it take to be a fantastic godparent? What should you do to be an unforgettable one? Take a gander at the list below to find out how:
1.) Be fun
When your godchildren are young, take the opportunity to be in their lives. Take the time to get to know them, what their interests and hobbies are and be the fun godparent. Be the doting and indulgent godparent—not by spoiling them with gifts all the time but by taking them on memorable trips. After all, you would rather be remembered as the fun godparent who took them on their first roller coaster ride than the godparent associated with gift checks and toys. Remember, there is no absolute need to buy your way into your godchild’s heart. What is important is that you spend time to bond with them.
2.) Never forget special occasions
This is a big one. As a godparent, it is your responsibility to take note of your godchildren’s birthday—mark them on your smartphone’s calendars with an alarm if you have to. Furthermore, on their special days and occasions, always remember to be there for them. It is not necessary to bring an expensive gift considering your presence alone would suffice. After all, you would not want to be that detached godparent who only sends greeting cards on special occasions. Take note: Your presence counts so much more than the present you are bringing.
3.) Know your place
While you were selected to be their godparent, this in no way means that you have some leverage on how their parents discipline them. Sure, you can serve as a good influence on them and be a great role model worth emulating. However, it should never extend beyond that. Your godchildren have parents who have their own approach to discipline as well as grandparents to mollycoddle them. Your job is to never take sides and never get entangled in familial conflicts and drama.
4.) Give your godchildren sound advice
There are instances wherein your godchildren may seek your counsel if there are things they do not wish their parents to know. One of these is when they start crushing on a classmate or begin dating. They may ask you how to approach a girl, which university they should attend and the like. In this regard, give them your sound and honest advice. Moreover, do not betray their trust, if they sought your counsel; do not go around blabbering to their parents unless it is a sensitive issue.