I'm not sure we can ever move again, because my partner, my son, and I live in a home that requires us to literally drive over the river and through the woods to get to grandparents' house. This is a life goal that I never knew I wanted until I reached it, since it allows me to now sing the old ditty freely and unabashedly whenever my partner and I take our son to visit. Though there can be a spectrum of emotions when it comes to visiting my family, the overwhelming one tends to be nostalgia. OK, technically the overwhelming one is stress because packing up a toddler for travel and then driving 300 miles is the worst, but that gives way once we arrive and then nostalgia takes over. My parents aren't living in the home I grew up in anymore (if they were, my heart would probably explode every time I arrived), but signs of my family, and of my childhood, are still everywhere.
I do understand there are plenty of people who have complicated relationships with their families, or who make different choices around their holiday celebrations, so my experience isn't universal. That said, my sense is that there are some common feelings that most of us have when we visit our old homes.
Why Did I Ever Leave?
Since becoming grandparents, my parents have really gone to the next level when it comes to having family over. I'm talking preparing our favorite foods, spoiling our son, and refusing our offers to help with chores (I'm embarrassed at how long it took me to figure out to just stop asking and start helping).
Why Didn't I Stay In A Hotel?
That said, despite their awesome efforts, there can still be moments of discomfort when you realize you were caught grabbing your partner's butt in their kitchen, or when your crying toddler is disrupting everyone's hot breakfast. Oops.
I Should Have Brought More Elastic-Waist Pants
For reasons that include both excess holiday eating and a desire to be nothing but comfortable for days on end. If there's no other time to embrace your inner sloth, it's at your parents' house during the holidays.
I Can't Believe They Kept That
My mom still has sixth grade art of mine proudly on display in her kitchen. It's heart-warming and slightly embarrassing...but mostly heartwarming.
Thank God The Internet Wasn't Around When These '90s Photos Were Taken
I actually think this on a regular basis, but nothing drives the point home more than my middle school dance pictures.
Why, Yes, I Would Like A Drink, Thanks For Asking
For various reasons (pregnancy, nursing, etc.) my ability to celebrate holidays with festive adult beverages has been pretty limited in recent years. That said, it doesn't mean I don't want one.
Here Are, Like, A Billion Tech Updates I Recommend
I'm not the most tech-savvy person out there, but I do know how to Google the answers to software-related questions. I'm never surprised at how much this life skill comes in handy when I visit my parents.
Wonder If Anyone Would Notice If I Hid This Christmas Album?
I love Christmas music as much as the next girl, but I can only handle it on repeat for so long.
I Could Go Out And See High School People...Or I Could Sit By The Fireplace And Drink. Hmm.
YES. Someone Else To Hold My Son While I Pee.
If this isn't living in the lap of luxury, I don't know what is.
*SIGH* Someone Else Is STILL Holding My Son
I mean, I know that part of the deal with the fact that my parents are cooking for us is that we are sharing our son with them. But that doesn't mean I don't still get a little squidgy when I haven't held him for hours.
Regression Back To My Early 2000s Maturity Level: Complete
I'm the youngest in my family, and my partner has ~politely~ confirmed that this is apparent whenever I'm around them. I'm not ashamed (mostly because I didn't really start to understand that emotion until I grew up anyway).
Images: Homini/Flickr; Giphy(12)