Some weeks offer the opportunity or necessity to regroup. You know what I mean. Things begin to go amok and they just continue down a certain negative trajectory. You find yourself watching it unfold in front of you and before it totally crashes and burns you try to salvage what is left. We had one of those weeks…last week. I couldn’t write about it because I was too busy trying to catch my part of the train before it crashed.
Sometimes we just need to regroup and catch our breath. Last Friday night that is exactly what we did. We planned out our weekend with the one teenager we have left in the house. We instituted a family-only weekend. No friends allowed.
We woke up Saturday morning and took the dog for a walk and then went for some breakfast. Now I am sure our 14-year-old was counting the minutes until we escaped from the cafe as she was hoping not to see any of her friends. No self-respecting 14-year-old wants to be seen out with their parents…alone…having breakfast. Fortunately, we all made it out unscathed. Then we went to get flowers as we were finally having a warm, sunny weekend. The smell of hot dogs lured our daughter in and she begged for a meal that you can only get on a Saturday in front the large hardware store. Just as we began to pick out our spot at the picnic table she looked at us like we were aliens and said, “We can’t eat out here. People might see us. We have to eat in the car.” So we did. We were regrouping, not pushing our luck.
Once back in the safety of our yard our daughter relaxed and helped plant all of the flowers, vegetables and herbs without complaint. In fact, she actually enjoyed getting her hands dirty.
Later that evening a friend called and asked her to hang out. I didn’t even turn around. I just eavesdropped from the kitchen. Now I realize we had instituted the no friends weekend, but that doesn’t mean a teenager won’t beg for leniency. But to my great astonishment I heard her say, “No thanks, I am just going to hang with my mom and dad tonight and watch a movie.”
What? This regrouping thing was working. Fist pump in the other room!
After our movie I could barely keep my eyes open and she looked at me and said, “today was really good. Can we do it again tomorrow?”
The next day we did some more errands, planting and talking. It was quiet, uneventful, productive and you know what? We all actually enjoyed our regroup. In fact, we are working on regrouping our entire summer. Sure, we are going to do some summer school, see friends, take a couple trips, but we are going to simplify and not overcomplicate. We are going to try to take it all in stride. Slow and steady.
While last week may have been a train wreck, we managed to turn it around in our little part of the world and we are thankful for the regroup!
Sunshine & Sarcasm,
Lowi & G