Thursday, July 28, 2011

Table for 5 (or why dinner as a family can be continued despite impending divorce)

I believe most people get married believing it is forever, not for ever. Introducing children to a relationship adds some additional concrete to the mix and, when all is said and done within the marriage and it is time to move on from being a couple, the presence of children continues to cement the two of you together for the imaginable future. Obvious, right? Nothing ground-breaking, just classic, common sense.

Although it is evident that every marriage has its own unique set of circumstances, it seems that divorces meet a few consistent themes. Usually they involve a quality of life diminishment, damage to the children, complicated visitation and financial arrangements, a complete re-writing of the holidays and traditions...

Positive impacts of divorce, and there is the potential for there to be some, aren't spoken about in anything above a whisper. Things like more focused parenting, increased time for personal interests and pursuits, less conflict, opportunities to rewrite holidays and traditions...

Every family has meaningful rites, whether it is the appreciative phrase one says as they arrive safely at home, or a special song played during a particular annual car trip. Things that have significance. I think most of these rituals are priceless, yet cost nothing. Why wouldn't a family want to continue these traditions? With some sensitivity and humor, I think it can (and should) happen - everyone benefits.

So, we gathered together as a family of five for a few days at the beach and everyone survived, I mean thrived. Picnic lunches were shared, our natural rhythm of tag team parenting easily fell back into place, and we went to our family's beach joint for a meal, where we sat together as a party of five. Instead of the boys recalling this as the summer their parents split, maybe they'll remember making some more family beach memories with Mom and Dad. And we'll all try to remain cognizant that a table for five is a privilege, not a punishment.

1 comment:

  1. Silvia, you should try to maybe expand this and send it to the divorce channel of Huff Post?... would be perfect... they don't pay, but it would be nice exposure to perhaps link to either DelSo or your TU blog?? Love and miss you.