With the start of the holiday season we’ve also started the annual rite of Mother Guilt. Perhaps you’re familiar with the kind, my mother and her guilt – or rather my guilt. No matter how much we try to avoid it – it happens every year. This year we are going to my parent’s house for Thanksgiving and we were planning on having Christmas Eve at our house. We invited my parents, my in-laws and my sister-in-law and her family. I just found out that my sister-in-law can’t make it because her step-daughter can’t come (she’s got to stay closer to home to be near her mother). Now my husband wants to go to his mom’s house for Christmas Eve instead. He doesn’t want it to be just my parents and our little family. I can see his point. Christmas is really fun when you have kids around. Ever since we had P we’ve wanted to her to be around other children on Christmas Eve.
Right before P turned 3 we decided to spend Christmas Eve with my parents at their house. It was just the 5 of us. I know that it made them incredibly happy to have their granddaughter all to themselves. My daughter’s birthday is in the first week in January so it was not three weeks after that happy Christmas when my dad completely freaked out after her birthday party. My parents were staying at a bed and breakfast nearby because my brother and his wife at the time were staying with us. They were leaving to go back to their room and he was asking what time I was serving breakfast the next morning, 8:30 am, 9:00 am?? Mind you, this is only three weeks after Christmas, one week after I spent my New Year’s Eve puking up some bad non-dairy creamer I put in my coffee and only hours after having 12 2-3 year olds plus their parents in my house for fun and a clever craft and when he asked me when Sunday breakfast was being served I replied (even half jokingly), aren’t you staying at a bed and breakfast? Don’t they serve breakfast there? You would have thought I had flipped him the bird the way he reacted to that. He didn’t talk to either of us or see us for MONTHS after that. Before he stormed out of the house that night he told my brother that I was a “piece of s**t”. I can’t even write it out, that particular comment is so hurtful to me. Needless to say, there are a lot of bad feelings on both sides as there has been for years.
I told my mom about the change in plans for this year on Sunday and I could hear the disappointment in her voice over the phone. Then she called me the next day and told me again how disappointed she was. I know that she is jealous of my in-laws because we see them so much more often. They also live much closer to us than my parents do. My parents might as well live in another state it takes so long to get to their house from mine. Just take a look at the map for crapssake! I do feel for them and I feel like I should be more forgiving. They are my parents and I love them but I just can’t stand this same routine for every single holiday and/or birthday. Now that they feel officially dissed does it mean that they are going to be giving us crap on Thanksgiving? Is my Dad going to lose his mind and freak out again? If they do end up coming to my in-laws on Christmas Eve are they going to be speaking to us? All these questions need answering but I fear that we won’t know them until the very moments are upon us. It is so easy to offend them, I shouldn’t even be surprised anymore when I do.