I am cooking dinner for my oldest son. I rarely mention him as I feel he is more of a Father than a son. He is not married ( got divorced 20 years ago), been with the same woman for 6 years and very set in his ways. We didn't get a long for a while as he is bossy and so am I. After being his Mom for so long, then he subtly took over. At first, he was advising me, then helping me make decisions and before you knew it, he was making them without me. That would have been fine but it is my life. About 3 years ago, I had a fire that destroyed everything I owned. No, I was not insured, I left with the clothes on my back and my life.
I became quite shaky after the fire. Very indecisive where to live, what to buy, how to get through a day. I have 3 sons and 1 daughter. The boys were there for me in every way possible. The younger two held my hand for a month or so. I stayed in a Hotel for a six weeks. I could have stayed at one of their houses but none smoke and I do. What that meant was I could have saved a lot of money by staying with one of them. No one argued with me but the oldest. He is the most practical, decisive, arrogant man I have ever known. Obviously, that was not what I needed. I needed to be pampered, cajoled, made to feel secure again. I needed to feel, I was in control. Of course, I was not. He would not come to see me at the hotel because I was not willing to give up smoking to stay with him. Also, I was incurring a $3000 expense, I did not need to, So it goes. I got a new apartment in a senior community, had to buy everything from a spoon to an air conditioner. I had no furniture, no clothes, no plan. My kids contributed $5000, for me to get what I needed. That is not a lot of money when you have to buy everything. I went on a spending spree at the furniture store buying a complete living room set, a recliner, a bedroom set, as well as mattress and box spring. Then I had to buy bedding, dishes, silverware,broom, mop, well you get it, everything. I bought an antique oak, whitewash small ,extremely heavy kitchen table with two antique chairs. It was expensive and my show piece. I spent $350 on a lamp for the table. That sent him over the top. "You can buy a lamp for $50 , why do you need one so expensive. That's ridiculous, did you lose your mind. I can not stand by and watch you waste all this money." My response, was, DON'T. He and I didn't see each other for a year. Well, we saw each other, just didn't interact. It wasn't nice.
About 2 years ago, I invited him to dinner on my antique oak table. He came and has come every Tuesday since. Just him and I having a quiet dinner with Mom's cooking. We learned to like each other again. Let's say we learned to respect each other again. My way of life is very different from his. He is a disciplined runner, health nut, car racer, that lives the high life at the Beach year round. I live low key, alone and do not need to socialize a lot. He has many get togethers at the Beach ( 20 minute drive) and I do not attend a lot of them. He takes that personally, as he is quite the host. Some in my family drink and have a blast. I do not drink and want no part of it. No reflection on him, it's my preference. He has decided, I disapprove of the way he lives. No, I do not disapprove of spending thousands of dollars on race cars, a beach home and the best wine. Live, your way, you earn your money. Never, never mention my table and lamp again !!! He doesn't mention it and I am happy he lives the "good life".
Tonight we are having parmasean chicken, mashed potatoes, some asparagus and a salad. He offers to bring dinner but I want to cook it for him. My other three kids are surprised we can get along for a couple of hours. I have dinner on the table, he sits down and eats (no wine) with his bottled water and we have a very deliberate conversation about sports and politics. We have come to terms, finally.
I am a bit of a spoiled brat and so is he. My one saying to him is " stop being such a man."
It's OK to spend $1000 on a set of rims but not more than $50 for a lamp.
To each his own. Still love him dearly but he is not my father nor my leader. Don't blur the lines.