Appointment with the Grandchild

Last year my step-son, his wife and their 5 month old son came from California for Christmas. It was the first time we got to see our Grandson. After they returned home she emailed me and said they would probably not be up this year because it was stressful to visit all family members in the time allotted. We live here as well as hubby's ex. Her parents live about 100 miles away which means more travel time in more than likely bad weather. They usually stay with an Aunt of hers in town, but is still clear across town. I understood but she sounded downright angry that they had to take their entire Christmas vacation to come up here to see us. And by us, I believe that meant 'us' and not her folks.

Recently my husband asked him if they were coming for Christmas, figuring he would say no; but he said yes. But last week we got this email:

Hello, It looks like traveling to Washington at Christmas time is going to be too expensive. We are now planning on traveling from Dec 10th through the 18th.  Will you be available to visit on Sunday December 11th?

Available to visit? Huh?

Did that sound like we're being penciled in? It did to me. Should I put that day on the calendar with a big red circle? Grandson visiting, 11:45 am, buy cookies. Are we bound by that day and time or will it be subject to change at the whim of a diaper change?

Now this is the part where I turn all bitter and snarky. From day one I have felt like we always get the short end of the stick. Her parents come first, then his mom, and we get the leftovers. Which turns out to be a Sunday visit; like what old people get when the yung'uns visit. When they visit because they have to, not because they want to.

The boy is almost a year and-a-half, we've seen him once. We got the usual birth pictures and that's it, not one photo since. Six month shot? Nope. Nine month, uh no. Special One Year photo? Haven't seen any. We have Skyped twice and it was brief. I can guarantee you that her parents have all the photos from every month and probably some in between too. See I told you I would sound bitter.

I understand how stressful traveling with a young one is and I'm sure one day they will just stay home. At least they will be in their own home for Christmas and can start building their own family memories. I'm just bothered by the fact that we have to make an appointment to see our Grandson when the rest of their visit will be spent with her family. But I guess we should feel grateful for the crumbs that we're being tossed.

So I'll just be sittin' in my rockin' chair with my shawl on to keep the cold offa my old bones waitin' for the boy to come and give his old Grannie a kiss on the cheek before they run outta here to go see his favorite Gram and Gramps.

Merry Flippin' Christmas Grannie.

Comments

D. Duplessis said…
I'm assuming simply asking them outright wouldn't work?

But I do understand, it's been my experience (and conversations I've had with other male friends of mine) that it's usually the males side of the family who always gets screwed during the holidays visits. Not sure why that is exactly...apart from the fact that woman due tend to be a bit more vocal and demanding. (Not you of course...those other women I know) :-)
Grumpy said…
Or you could look at it as them setting aside a special time just for you.
kden said…
I agree David. I think the reason is that women are naturally closer to their mother so she usually wins out in that department. And being extra vocal works too!

And Grumpy, I don't entirely buy that. One Christmas before they even had their son, they came to visit with the other son and Tony's ex. They stayed a very short time and then got up and said they were going out to dinner. Didn't even ask if we'd like to join them; after not seeing them for over a year. We just stood there with our mouths open and Faith started crying. They have no idea how much she misses them. So we'll see; I'm not holding out that it will be any better this year.
fernvalley01 said…
well said! it is a struggle to accomodate everyone , I too tend to gravitate to my own fam over the holidays , but only after making every effort to spend time with hubby's folks . That is a whole other story , but suffice to say ,if she is speaking to us we go and see his mom and dad no questions asked
Mr. Shife said…
Sorry that this is happening and completely understand how you feel. Hopefully you get more time with the grandson. And we do spend a lot of time with my wife's side of the family but it is a proximity thing. Have a good weekend.
basefare said…
We had a similar deal with a grandson and we asked. The answer went something like this: It's hard to work every body in with only a week to see everyone. We didn't realize they had a bunch to see. I guess you have to let these things play out as they will.
Claire King said…
Yikes, this is a tough one. I am assuming you are stating they spend the night with other family members, then just visit with you guys briefly? My only suggestion would be to invite them to spend the night to ease the traveling. (?) Not sure. I hope they spend more time with your family or maybe you should say something like you wish their visit would be longer. Hmm...

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