My Way or The Highway – Forcing My Will on The Family

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This week I was reminded of how much our family life has changed since I stopped expecting our lives to revolve around what works best for me. For many years, I actually thought that was how it should be done. If Mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy, as they say. But, once I learned how to take a step back and observe, so much of our family life has shifted.

There’s this scene in season three of The Crown that put that change of perspective into words for me. An elderly Princess Alice says to her brother Lord Mountbatten,

“There came a moment, around the time I turned 70, when it dawned on me I was no longer a participant, rather a spectator.”

While I still have a healthy amount of participation years ahead of me, it feels wise, healthy, and beneficial to start this transition as soon as possible. 

I can report that after years of practice, I’m always pleasantly surprised by how much better things work out when I get out of the way. While I often have to choke down a big ol’ piece of humble pie, it’s a reminder that what’s best for the group is always what’s best.

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  1. Oh my Mags…well I am almost 60 ….And I am slowly seeing how insignificant I am (will be) to the grand picture of my adult children. Not in a bad way…Just in a “It’s their turn” way. So good on you….And I too try to be more yielding than ever…Sort of observe…..vs always taking the helm. I tis very interesting!! And I am actually happier!

    • Annie,
      Thank you for taking the time to share…and it’s true, it really does make for more joy.
      It’s so much easier to be a passenger than the one steering the ship!

  2. It is so true. That old saying, “If Momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy,” always makes me think of the story a college friend told. His mother disciplined him by hitting him on the head with a frying pan. Maybe if the house were on fire, that would make sense. Otherwise…. no!

    • A frying pan, you say?
      I’m not gonna lie—-you’ve peaked my interest…

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