Real Life column
The time has come for this column to wrap up.
Over the past number of years, I have had the pleasure of sharing some of the ups and downs of raising a family of four children while working from home. When the column began, all of those children were in the public school system. Now the oldest is a teacher, my only son is starting a career in the business world and my twin daughters have graduated high school and are off to university.
Since the two oldest children have moved out, the sibling rivalry is not quite what it used to be. The arguments about who is the favourite or who had it toughest growing up still sometime happen. Now, however, something else is just as likely to happen – four young adults having a conservation. That being said, having two teenage girls under the same roof is still good for a shouting match or two.
For me, writing the column has been fun. For my family, it has sometimes been embarrassing but I think down deep they really haven't minded it all that much. We used to live in the Summerside area and I can't count the times I have been talking to somebody I know and they relay some detail of our family life back to me. It really bothered my wife and she often caught herself ready to ask how they know that before she remembered the column. Now, you will have to talk to me in person to catch up.
While I have always tried to keep the stories upbeat, there have been some sad times shared as well. As we all know, life doesn't always leave you smiling. There was the death of my father-in-law nearly three years ago and, more recently, the death of my father. In those instances, sharing their stories has been part of the healing process for me.
The one comment I hear most often is how people have identified with what they read. That was the desired effect.
I have never felt the highs and lows experienced by our family were unique. Every parent has felt the sense of accomplishment that comes with the achievement of their children and has felt the frustration when nothing seems to be going right.
Another question I have been asked is "How much do you have to embellish things?" The answer is "not much." To tell you the truth, that bothered me when I first started. It was a little hard to admit the day-to-day life of your family was funny enough without having to add any colourful details.
Hopefully, this column has brought you a smile or a nod of agreement every other week. I want to thank you for reading and the staff at the newspaper, past and present, for their help. They have always been easy to work with.
Now for the final time "that's the way it is in real life."