How does your family make connections? They say that we gravitate to the familiar, which is why kids who grow up in abusive homes, often find an abuser of their own later in life to "fix" things. Hmm. But my husband grew up camping, and that's how he and his family connected. On some brutal trail mastering the universe. Whatever. My family bonded over good food and nice hotels.
May I just state that there was no bait and switch. I was not He-man when we dated, and though I did give into camping on many occasions with the kids, I never enjoyed it. Not even when pregnant on my birthday with no running water and my church friends decorated my tent. But that was the closest I came. Because there was no brutal hike or "Survivor" tests. Other than the outhouse when pregnant, that is.
My family is going in the RV this week. Without me. I am working. This whole summer has been driving my kids to their events, and work has taken a backseat. So I get the whole week to work. Yesterday, my daughter came to me and said, "Mom, I wish you were coming in the RV."
I said, "Really Elle, do you really wish that?"
She thinks about it for awhile and then says, "No, you ruined it last time. We had to come home early." LOL
I have had one "rule" on my vacation requirements. I will not go anywhere that my BlackBerry doesn't work. Because that means I am in the middle of nowhere, and I really have no desire to ever be that out of touch from people. Yet, it seems every single year, I am in the middle of nowhere with no way to connect to the outside world and I spend every single day of my life in the car connecting with the kids, so how exactly is that a vacation?
So I connect by listening to my kids. By asking questions, by discussing all aspects of lives and what they see in other people's lives. I don't need to be amongst the dirt to do that. So while it may look dysfunctional that I'm missing the family RV trip (and very well may be) I have lived through it enough to know that I hate to camp. And that little fact is going to overtake any good parts of "connection" and edge closer to the resentment factor. Suffering for no reason is just that. Like I said, there was no bait and switch. I was driving a Mustang Convertible, had my nails done weekly and marketed a shopping mall for a living. Where would someone get the idea that I'd turn into Annie Oakley?
What's your favorite way to connect with your family? Incidentally, I'm connecting with my best friend for vacation. In Mexico.
Labels: Camping, connection, dining, family connections, family vacations, RV