Recently had a friend moaning to me that her four adult children made life so complicated that it was exhausting trying to deal with them. She opted out of accepting any Thanksgiving invitations this year and took herself off to a spa in Sedona for the holiday weekend. "Now non of them will talk to me but I really don't care". Ouch, that's not the way it should be.
I have a mercifully united trio of children who delight in one another's company albeit loudly and competitively. When they were younger the attempts were to out gross one another - not sure much has changed! Past two years we've been without the middle one - he and his family have been living in Africa. Newly returned to the US they let us know that the drive down from the Bay Area with two little ones and dog was just too much for the weekend. About 11 a.m. Thursday morning as I wrestled the turkey into the oven I received a phone call from Ben begging for help with a pie crust gone wrong. "I've e mailed you a photo , Mom. Please look at it." Really, I thought, I don't have time but obligingly went into my study to check e mail. The photo was not of pie-crust! At first I couldn't get my head around it and then realised that they were at the corner of my street next to the porta potty (long story - suffice to say over a year of roadworks has made this bright red intrusion on a the landscape seem like a permanent fixture). So they had made the drive from Oakland after all. The lure of spending time with family, friends and siblings overcame any hesitation. What fun. Three year old Maxine bounded up my steps waving a bunch of flowers and shouting "Surprise. We came to your house."
There's never shortage of food, conversation and laughter, and although I occasionally long for one of those picture perfect Thanksgiving dinners where the mess in the kitchen doesn't exist, where everything is hot, where nothing gets spilled - who cares. I wouldn't trade the joyful chaos of being surrounded by my children for anything.
The first steps in my Life Reimagined - When AARP approached me to do a trial of their Life Reimagined program, I saw it as an excellent opportunity to hear some fresh voices other than the ones ...