5 Myths of Family Time

Family visits bring us closer, right? RIGHT? Let’s examine the myths and realities of togetherness.

It’s Easter! That means some of us have another holiday weekend coming up!

And by some of us, I mean those of us who are actually Christian, and the rest of us who celebrate Easter for a mash-up of ambiguous reasons ranging from leftover guilt to an abiding love of jelly beans.

In other words, reasons we mostly don’t understand and can’t actually coherently explain to our children.

But, hey! Order that ham, buy those chocolate bunnies, pick out your Sunday(brunch) best, and let’s do this bunny-springtime-candy-NO, KIDS IT’S NOT CHRISTMAS-thing.

Oh, yeah, and family is coming. To stay. In your house. With you. Which, six weeks ago over the phone, seemed like a great idea. Now that they arrive in less than 24 hours, it’s actually VERY CLEARLY A TERRIBLE IDEA. WHOSE TERRIBLE IDEA WAS THIS, ANYWAY?!

Let’s examine the myths and realities of family time.

Myth: Family visiting is a great idea!

Reality: Family visiting is a great idea!  If you’re looking for a way to trigger every childhood trauma you can possibly remember, get drunk, and fight.

Myth: When the family comes, ye shall set a glorious and plentiful feast upon a splendid table adorned with shimmering silver, pressed linens, too many plates, and spoons in weird places.

Reality: Come on, dude. You don’t even have enough chairs. Well, ok. You don’t have enough chairs that will actually support the weight of a human and/or are not covered in some sort of fossilized goober juice.

Hey, you DO have those chairs your grandmother caned from pond reeds 130 years ago and those can hold at least 8-9 pounds. So, if your family is comprised entirely of cats, then you totally have enough chairs.

Myth:  Together, we will explore this great city/town/place I call home!

Reality:  You’ll spend most of your time deciding what activity to do. About an hour before everything closes, you’ll come up with a plan. You’ll tell the kids — who’ve been rolling around on the floor like bored walruses — that you finally made a plan, AND THEY BETTER HURRY UP AND GET READY CUZ IT’S GONNA BE TOO LATE.

You’ll then shell out $162 to be in a museum (the one you never wanted to go to) for just shy of a full 7 minutes before everyone is overcome with blazing hanger. Abandon all hope and spend another $162 on crappy pizza in the museum café.

Myth: You have matching linens that fit all the beds.

Reality: You don’t. You have two sets of sheets that you know are clean because, of course, you washed them yourself. Several times. But they’re also so stained and discolored from all those years of forgetting to buy new sheets, it’d be hard to convince a guest that these aren’t the very sheets upon which you birthed your children.

Myth: You can’t wait for all this dumb visiting to be over because everyone is irritating and it’s high time to get back to your normal routine.

Reality: You’ll cry when they leave, and miss them when they’re gone. They’re your people, after all.