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05-19 Sarah Raplee – Riff on 7 yrs. Of SPAM & a Giveaway

Thursday, June 12, 2014

The Sandwich Generation?

It's funny how our lives move. Just this past weekend my parents moved back into the house with us. As such my husband and I are currently referred to as the sandwich generation. That term came about to explain a multigenerational house. My father is recovering from throat cancer and several surgeries, my mom has degenerative hip disease, then there is my husband as we raise our three kids (two of which are teenagers).

There are so many emotions that float through someone when they take on the responsibility of a parent's well being. Getting them healthy, keeping them from wondering off, or even just trying to make them happy can induce stress not only among the adults taking on the responsibility, but also the kids within the household. They not only have to listen to their parents, they've now got an additional set of adults that get to boss them around.

Luckily, we've got plenty of things planed for them this summer to take away stress. On the plus side they get to know their grandparents better and hear the stories of their ancestry from the mouth of someone who remembers.

Have you ever had to think about living with your parents? Would you if you had to?


Sarah Raplee said...

I would if I had to. Hats off to you, RT, the kids, and your parents.

My youngest son and his family are moving in with us next weekend. Second Son works for my husband in a business on our property. Son and Wife are both in college while raising four children. They hope to build a house on the property sometime in the future.

So we thought, why not pool our resources? The young people can help maintain the acreage. Between the eight of us, we can have a big garden, can berries and apples, raise chickens for eggs and have a couple of alpacas for wool and entertainment. Plus our grandchildren will grow up close to nature.

Blending families takes time and effort. We've done it three times in the past for 6 months to a year and a half, so we're not going into this with rose-colored glasses. We have no regrets about doing so in the past, and we look forward to this new adventure.

With patience, willing hands and loving hearts, you will all find a balance over time.

Diana McCollum said...

My Mom, 88 yrs old, with severe hearing loss is living with us. We don't have the added responsibility of children, thank goodness!! My Mother has health problems that come and go, and my husband has COPD and back problems. My Mother can't tolerate a lot of noise, so having children live with us would not work out. Sometimes it's hard. Sometimes it's fun. I admire you Mae and Sarah for taking in large family. I've told my kids, Don't ever let me move in, and I mean it!!

Maggie Lynch said...

What a loving daughter you are! I am fortunate that my both my mother and father can still function on their own (in their mid 80's). They are close (an hour away) and my sisters and I try to make sure they are safe and keeping appointments.

My personal dream has always been to have acreage with several small homes in order to have a place where parents, siblings, or children could come and stay as needed. Unfortunately, money didn't work out that way (at least not yet). I believe far too many people have lost a sense of responsibility to their families. It IS hard work and sometimes frustrating. But it is also a gift.

Hugs to you and your family Maepen.

Judith Ashley said...

Hi Mae, Whether parents live with us or it's our kids or grandkids, being a multi-generational family has its up and downsides. While my son and his family lived with me, I traveled across town several times a week to oversee my parents' medical care for five years and then took on the same responsibility for my brother in Phoenix, AZ. My son, wife, and oldest granddaughter moved in 2009 but my youngest granddaughter stayed. She is still here along with a friend.

I think the greatest gift to your children is being able to have that special connection to their grandparents and learn the family history (and our country's history) directly from them. One of my best friends is downsizing, never had children, and she has family heirlooms going back to before the Civil War - she has no one who appreciates these items like she does. I know there are some things my granddaughters will keep because they know the story behind it and because they were important to me.

It is true that many hands make the work easier! May your load be lightened in other ways now that you have blended the generations into your family home.