My husband and I live about 4 hours away from both our parents, which puts us close enough to visit for a weekend but not close enough that it’s an easy trip. One issue that constantly arises is how frequently the inlaws should be visited or visit us.
Right now between birthdays, observances like Mother’s and Father’s Day and national holidays we are making visits at least every other month and sometimes more than one visit in that month. We feel a lot of pressure to keep the visits equitable…so if we visit my parents, it is followed shortly after by a visit to Hubby’s parents.
While I like visiting, I will admit that it can get completely exhausting. I often feel like I’m never in my own home.
And, as I’m writing this, it’s not gone unnoticed that the holiday season is fast approaching…which means that we need to figure out the next round of schedules and duration of visits again.
For the past two years we tried to adopt an every other holiday visit policy to try to cut back on the frenetic pace necessary for us to get in person with both families. I wish I could say that our strategy was successful. Much complaining resulted when both sides realized that “every other” meant that we weren’t going to make an appearance for every holiday. So while we now alternate who we are physically with on Thanksgiving and Christmas Day…we still have to go and see both families for those holidays….kinda like our own personal Cannonball Run.
So…how do you please everyone? I’m coming to the conclusion that you just can’t.
The tough part is that in pleasing everyone else, we are not pleasing ourselves at all. All these road trips mean that we are never in our own home for the holidays. We haven’t built any of our own traditions yet. We have to plot our schedule, map our path and get the timing right so that we can get to everyone….and God forbid we hit traffic. It’s seriously exhausting.
So, unfortunately there is no easy solution to this dilemma. We continue to take it one holiday, birthday, observance or occasion at a time…and we probably should buy some stock in gasoline.
Do you have challenges with your inlaws? Tell us about it…
Photo credit: -= Bruce Berrien =-’s Flickr photostream