For years we sat down at the table every night to eat dinner together. Then… the older kids turned into teenagers. Sports, jobs, homework caused varying schedules and we began to eat as needed: different times, different locations, different food. It happens. Plates on laps in front of the TV became norm, with dinner at the table being a “special occasion.”
I have tried several times since to instill the old routine, never making much headway. Recently our 14 yr old, who felt jipped, laid on the guilt moving everyone to again try. Low and behold its happening. And I will tell you something intriguing, togetherness takes practice! Common courtesies such as allowing others their opinion, not raising ones voice or walking away in disagreement, manners etc… take Grace.
Another curiosity I’ve observed is, spending time face to face (connecting) seems to create a greater difficulty “disconnecting.” After several nights of eating together, no one leaves the table quite as quickly. Conversations linger a bit.Teasing is more funny than harsh. Cards or other games have been brought out. Genuine interest in someone else’s interests happen spontaneously. Pretty cool.
As a mom, the thing that pleases me most (!!!) is not help around the house, although I do appreciate that. Rather it’s when my children get along (love) each other. I can’t make them do it – and oh how I have tried. But I can help to create an opportunity. Who knew time around the table meant so much. For that reason, we will keep on trying 🙂
22 year old family still requires nurturing.