Re-marriage has brought plenty of challenges that we were prepared for, and worked out successful compromises along the way, but sometimes it’s the land mine that trips you up. For us it’s holidays.
When we married four years ago, both my husband and I envisioned bringing the five kids together at holiday time. It didn’t work out that way.
Our kids were three-quarters grown. Our traditions were vastly different, but most the toughest part was that my husband’s extended family expected my kids and I to celebrate all holidays with them.
We tried a compromise. We invited both sets of parents and his sister and her kids to our home for the holidays. It was awkward and the kids hated it.
So we tried again- taking turns going to one in-laws and then another, but that didn’t go as planned. Every year there was some important reason to skip my turn: his step father was ailing, his brother’s family was in town, grandma was coming for the first time.
Finally I gave up. We celebrate holidays separately. Thanksgiving he goes to his mother’s house with his kids, and I host Thanksgiving for my kids.
My husband works Christmas so he sees his kids after work.
Easter he goes to his mother’s or sister’s house.
I am beginning to believe we will never spend a holiday together. Even July 4th is filled with expectation.
Perhaps if we had gotten together while our kids were much younger we would have had time to create our own traditions, but it seems too late to change.
Come tomorrow morning, we will share a kiss and get in our cars to go our separate ways. Maybe when we are in our eighties we will spend a holiday together. I’ll probably be too old to care.