After my parents announced that they were divorcing, I can remember my grandmother telling me that she wasn't entirely surprised. While she was upset about the news, the one thing I remember her telling me is that my parents "never did anything together. They were always going in two different directions."
It is funny what affects you. Random comments that might not have meant too much to the person who spoke them suddenly have a profound effect on your own future.
I'd by lying if I said those words didn't stick with me. Perhaps I take it too far sometimes. I want to be the opposite of not doing anything together. I want our family to do a lot together. I plan things all the time - things that I hope we all have fun doing. I want my sons to grow up with positive memories of doing things together as a family.
Last weekend, we went to the zoo. I thought they'd love it. But the day was a little hot even in the morning, and the zoo is by a river so the air is muggy. Will was tolerant. Matt didn't care about the animals - he was more interested in running away (which meant I had to give chase). And Luke... the one who I thought would be most excited by seeing lions and elephants and giraffes... had this look on his face the entire time:
It would appear that I had planned too much. They were telling me that they'd had enough. And I can take a hint. My slightly unnatural compulsion to have us on the go is no match for three tantruming kids.
So this past weekend, we stuck close to home. Instead of our earlier plans to put Luke in taekwondo and Will in hippotherapy, we decided that our family was better suited for a pool membership. Together, but low key. It put us all on the same course instead of pulling us in several different directions. We went to the pool twice this past weekend, not worrying how long we stayed or who just wanted to sit on the deck.
It was awesome. And look whose got a new attitude: