Sorry for being MIA lately. It's been a few months of highs and lows at Tara. We moved into a new house (yay!), Jade and Gabby are doing well even though Jade is in her last year of elementary school (YIKES!), I finally finished graduate school (YAY YAY YAY!), and all in all, it's been happy chaos. We did however lose a family member over the summer, and of course even though Becca is now 18, she is still in the throes of PAS. Every year, all I can do is continue to pray and hope she will eventually come around.
Thankfully, this holiday season doesn't bring forth any blended family drama. My biggest upset is that we will not be going home to our Southern roots for Christmas due to me and Ashley's work schedules. But I well remember the holiday uproar, the even-wackier-than-usual visitation schedules, the fact that holidays do not always bring out the best in people.
I know it's hard, and I don't mean to sound trite. Sometimes the best you can do is disengage during the holiday season, and be thankful for what is and try to ignore what is not even though it should be. I found the less I involved myself with Ashley and Becca's mom's disagreements at this time of year, the less worked up I got and the happier I was. Happy wife, happy life, right? If you refuse to engage, she can't win. Don't get involved in a text argument. If the visitation plan falls through because your husband waited until the last minute to make arrangements, let it be. If the kids won't shut up about "Mom this" and "Mom that," I found a nonchalant, "Oh mmhmm? That's nice. Did you know cats are night vision?" always worked wonders. It sounds overly simple, doesn't it? But if you don't rent out space in your head, it's a lot easier to get through this emotionally charged season.
Oh, and whenever possible, try to work with your husband to create your own family traditions. If he doesn't see the need for this, continue poking and prodding until he gets it. It's OK for you to do things differently at your house than what the kids do at Mom's - in fact, it's healthy and normal. I think it's great for kids to be exposed to different traditions and ideas. If your husband doesn't encourage your role as Lady of the House.....well, that might need to be a topic for another post.
Wishing you and yours a most wonderful Thanksgiving, and to my Jewish friends, a joyous Hanukkah!