In-between football games last night, my family did something few families still do. We sat down and ate dinner together. Granted it was fast, we all had heartburn and nobody spoke very much, but we did sit down together. I really didn’t know that we were not the norm.
I talked to a random few friends of mine and found that most of them don’t eat together very much. Whether it be jobs, sports or other factors, dinnertime has become a rare pastime. Even though I don’t remember eating much as a family growing up, I make a point to get everyone at a table at least once per day. On the weekends, that turns to twice per day. I learn a lot during that fifteen minutes that we gather together.
I find out what the kids have been up to and what they are headed for in the night. I learn about teachers who made them miserable or the girls and boys that didn’t. I also gain knowledge if they need anything or aren’t feeling up to par. We usually laugh, tell the odd joke and if someone is missing from the meal, set their plate anyway. I will admit that it is getting harder these days and there is usually one person missing from the table, but we still try.
My son was asked at school a few weeks ago to show by raising their hands who still ate together everyday. He was the only person in his class who lifted his arm and he was shocked. The teacher re-phrased the question to once or more per week and a few more hands came up. I want to know if we are all just that busy, lazy or if our social climate just has outgrown the need to sit together. What do we do instead?
I want to keep the hope alive that those kids were just too embarrassed to admit they do it and that more of us are out there, sitting down and breaking bread and taking a moment to enjoy each other.