Sunday was Father's Day. I don't typically look forward to any holiday because of how much work it takes to coordinate four families schedules just so we can sit down and have a meal together on "THE" day. Father's day is no exception.
Our first few years of marriage, I expected that Raylan's ex's would arrange their Father's Day plans around ours considering that Raylan's the dad. Nope! Instead we would spend hours going around the barn about who should have the dinner hour on the glorious day. The fact that we were having these conversations infuriated me to no end. How could they disrespect Raylan on the one day it was supposed to be about him? Raylan would tell me, I'm used to it and I don't really care, we'll take whatever time no one wants. WHAT??? He's always thought of Father's, Mother's and Valentines day as legalized extortion created by the retail industry. From his perspective he couldn't understand why I cared so much when he clearly didn't.
For a while I thought the anger was all about the dis-respect they had for Raylan, but over time I realized that at a deeper level it was me trying to recreate what I considered to be a normal family celebration that was being hindered by the ex's. I was letting them dictate my feelings about the day because like them, I wasn't getting my way. Grown adults fighting over a certain hour in the day. It seems so silly now as I talk about it. Luckily, a few years later I decided to put my sword down and take my hubby's advice. I started hosting a brunch/pool party with a two hour commitment from the kids. Surely that could work with their other family parties. It did and we've been celebrating it that way ever since.
This year I continued with our traditional celebration; inviting the kids and grandkids over for the two hour brunch. They happily agreed to come. Even though Raylan hates the holiday, he had some requests for the breakfast. So instead of being a smart ass and saying I thought you hated the holiday, I simply replied love too! I started cooking around nine and told Raylan to read the paper while the three kids snoozed. Hubby asked several times to help, but I told him relax, it's your day. Thirty minutes before the adult kids arrived, Raylan woke the sleeping beauties and suggested they might want to help mom out. Their response: With what? I don't know, breakfast for 13 people. Just a thought.
When everyone arrived we gathered around the table to eat and the smiles and laughter stated immediately which carried out to the pool. What had originally been planned as a two hour party turned into six and it only ended then so we could get to our various evening commitments.
And what did my hubby think about this retail holiday? Well, he looked at me and said "thanks for creating the atmosphere for a perfect afternoon, I couldn't have asked for a better day!" And with that, I realized I had the "normal" family celebration I dreamed about all those years earlier even if it was noon on Father's Day!