There are many differences in the world now as compared to the one I grew up in. But there is one thing that I feel I am missing more and more lately – family dinner time. In today’s society, it seems we are all getting busier and busier to the point of pure exhaustion by the end of the day. Add to this our obsession with technology and it’s easy to see why sit down family dinners are becoming ancient history.
Sure our family still has dinner together, but it does not feel like a true Family Dinner like I remember from my childhood.
You know the types of dinners I am talking about. The ones where the children help set the table, someone cooks a home-cooked meal (no matter if it is shake and bake, hamburger helper, or a four course meal), and the whole family sits down together for at least 30 minutes.
Let’s also add that the family dinners I am missing also do not include cell phones, iPads, smart watches, or any other type of technology!
To be honest, growing up I never really held family dinners in high regard and found them quite annoying at times when I would rather be out playing with my friends. But now looking back as an adult, I actually have many fond memories of evenings around the dinner table.
Everyone was together (forcibly or not), and we sat around and ate and listened to whatever my dad put on the stereo. The music is actually what I remember most. I was introduced to so many of the music legends from several decades before my time, and without family dinner time I probably would have never listened to this music!
Fast forward to my life today.
My husband and I are typically getting done with work right around dinner time and we usually come home to eat a rushed dinner. There are also extra curricular events and practices for our girls that are thrown into the mix. We do try to make it a point for our family to sit down together, but there are many days when busy schedules do not allow it and we eat on the go or at separate times.
Let’s also not forget to mention the cell phones….
it seems that one of us is always seems to get distracted by our phones. I have told my husband, and I am 100% serious, that we need to begin leaving our phones at the door when we come home. I do not want to raise children that think it is okay to be looking at their phones during dinner!
I think what this all comes down to is the realization that there now needs to be a concentrated effort to do something – family dinner – that used to just be a given.
This fact is also a great reminder that if our lives are so busy that we can not enjoy 30 minutes together as a family, maybe we need to re-evaluate the commitments we take on.
How different could our world be if we all put aside our busy schedules and made a concerted effort to truly sit and enjoy one another’s presence every single day? I’m ready to really try and bring the family dinner back…who’s with me?