Did you ever play the game M.A.S.H as a kid? M=mansion, A=apartment, S=shack, H=house? If this game doesn’t ring a bell I can explain really quick–it’s a fortune telling game of your future.
School age children get together and play this game and then laugh about what their “future” would be like living under the circumstances given from the game. For example, my outcome after playing might tell me:
“Lisa will live in an APARTMENT, with SIX children, in PARIS, drive a BICYCLE, live on $5,000 a YEAR salary, with a MASTERS degree, and be married to MARK WAHLBURG”
In real life, as a child, the idea of my future consisted of me having the perfect family: a handsome husband who treated me like a princess, a beautiful home with a white picket fence, live by the beach, we are rich, I drive a red Jeep Cherokee, have one little boy, a little girl, and we all live happily ever after.
Right? Anyone else have this perception as a child? Culturally, this picture above was the ideal example of happiness. I remember coloring pictures like this and carefully picking the colors for the kids clothes, my shoes, and my husbands golden hair. Haha!
Then I grew up!
I married a man who battled addiction, we divorced after 2 children (our sons). We remarried two years later. Then we had a daughter. We struggled financially. We didn’t always get along. We lived by the beach. Then, he battled addiction to the point where he died, leaving me alone to raise our three children.
Wait a minute….THIS WAS NOT THE PLAN!! This wasn’t even in the picture of what I imagined.
Then, I married someone else (a Widower) and he lived in Utah…far away from the beach. We blended our children together (all 8 of them) and instead of “mom and dad” we added the additional title of “stepmom and stepdad”.
Wait a minute…THIS WAS NOT THE PLAN EITHER.
All I wanted was the “perfect family” which obviously looked like that picture above or the idea I had as a child. It didn’t include divorce or remarriage or death of a spouse or remarriage again or stepchildren.
My entire idea of what the ideal, perfect family was, has changed. And judging by statistics, our culture has changed the family unit as well.
I wonder if the kids today have changed the game of M.A.S.H??
Families today consist of two moms, two dads, one mom, one dad, step parents, no parents, grandparents, adoptive parents, parents that don’t look like you, children that are a different color than you, and the list goes on.
Do I accept that my family is not what I pictured or imagined? Yes! Can someone tell me what a perfect family is today? Probably not, there are so many versions.
My family unit today is made up of my 4 birthed children, 5 stepchildren, one new husband, one deceased husband, Matt’s deceased wife, and this sure didn’t seem to be an option in that game of MASH…but it’s perfect for us. Our lives may not be what we had originally planned but it’s okay!
Is your family the way you dreamed as a child?
*all images from google search