Stranger in My Home

That's me. The last two days I have gone into the basement, glass in hand, to sneak a shot of gin into my glass before adding 100%-no-sugar-added cranberry juice. When the in-laws are in for a visit, our house transforms into a vegetarian, nonfat milk drinking family of teetotalers. These are all not true of our family on any other day, but when we host Scott's parents, we put on another face, false as it may be. It bothers me that we do this altogether, but for the sake of peace and aged obedience this transformation has continued for seven years.
There have been lapses, of course, like the time Scott and I came back from our honeymoon in California's wine country with a bottle of wine for his parents. As he handed the bottle to them, a look of horror passed over their faces. We haven't brought alcohol back to their house anymore. Even now, Scott hides any alcohol we have in the basement during a visit and, if there is an open bottle of wine shortly before they arrive, he is sure to empty it before their arrival (not down the drain, of course).
During this past visit, as we shopped for the week's groceries, I informed Don that our family drinks 1% milk, with great gusto. I backed off, though, claiming that the only reason we did this was because Olivia needed the fat in her diet, according to her pediatrician. Quite frankly, I can't stomach the taste of nonfat milk anymore. It tastes like white water with an awful aftertaste.
Even Scott's dad has lapses as a vegetarian. Nearly every time we visit each other, Scott's mom makes meatloaf, and Scott's dad eats multiple helpings of the stuff. Seeing this window of opportunity, I cooked chicken the following night. He ate none, and filled himself with rice and salad at dinner, followed by multiple helpings of multigrain cheerios (with nonfat milk, of course) and dannon light 'n' fit yogurt. When he asked about my former vegetarianism, I told him that my pregnancy with Olivia brought irresistible cravings for burgers...made with beef. He looked at me with disdain and called me a 'failed vegetarian'. Oh well.
I say this all with tongue in cheek, but it does raise a question:
How long and to what degree must we 'honor our parents'?

1 comment:

Elizabeth said...

That's an interesting question - we've had the same issue as far as alcohol with Jason's grandparents. We try not to flaunt it, but we don't hide our alcohol when they visit. We have had some discussions.

We too are trying to figure out the respectful way to show that we are our own household with our own way of doing things. It can be hard at times...there are other things to with both sets of parents - but we're just trying to figure it out. Let me know if you find the secret!