May 23, 2006

// April 24th, 2012 // Uncategorized

     For the last five months, our Sunday Family Dinner has been a joke. Of the five kids that could be here, there are usually only three or four. Only every six weeks or so do all five make it, and then I wonder if it was such a good idea after all. We don’t fight—i­t h­­asn’t­ come to that…yet. But we also don’t enjoy each other, either.

     Last year Nett and Jeremy each told me (independently) that they noticed a growing distance between us and that we needed to start getting together for weekly dinners the way we did before Steve died. I had all but forgotten our tradition. After talking it over with Dave, we decided to set aside every Sunday for “Family Dinner”. Jeremy wanted Friday, but Dave’s usually too blown out from the workweek by the time he gets home on Friday that all he wants to do is rest. Sunday works better for most us.

     Amy and Jeremy usually go out with church friends on Sundays, or are too tired from their responsibilities at church to go anywhere, leaving us with the resentful feeling that we’ve been replaced by their “new family”. Instead of drawing us closer, this renewed tradition is expanding the rift, turning family dinner into an evening of bitter speculation about what could be keeping them away.

     I asked my kids to leave it alone, hoping if we just ignore it, this will soon pass. Instead, what Nick ignored was my request. He took this grievance to Jeremy. The shit hit the fan. Now the proverbial family walls are a distinctive shade of brown.

     It stinks and it hurts, but now that we can all see the mess maybe we can all start working together to clean it up.

{P.S. I just have to say here, from 2012, that I am so happy these days are far behind us and we are a real family again. We still have our problems, few families don’t. But all in all, we do enjoy each others’ company now. Maybe this is why it took me six months to get back to blogging. Somehow I feel disloyal to my family bringing these things up again. And the pain becomes fresh again. But this is where we were at that time. Where we are now been built on these tough times. And I believe we are stronger because of it. Like the old saying goes…What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. And since we’re still breathing, I guess that means we are, indeed, stronger.}

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