There's some CRAZY wedding stuff out there.
Somewhere we saw these hats that the bride and groom had custom made for themselves and their wedding party. They said, "Team Smith." (Or whatever their names were.)
As cheesy as we thought the hats were, we loved the Idea. The Idea that our new family would be a team, there to cheer each other on, support one another, take the hits for one another. Team Pair. (Obviously, we use our own last name.) And we have been Team Pair ever since.
When we had kids, we added to the Team. We have Team cheers. We have Team mottoes. We have Team Goals. And we have Team Rules.
We all adhere to the Team Pair Rules, which we came up with together:
- Respect each other.
- Use kind hands and kind words.
- Do your part.
Our team approach has worked out fairly well so far.
Our children identify heavily as the "Pairs." They are proud to come from this family, and proud of our team. They support each other, take the hits for each other, and are learning that sometimes being a part of a team means putting your own wants second to the needs of the team. They understand that no matter what happens out there, in the non-Pair world, here we are a support system that loves them and believes in them.
We are not equals in Team Pair. Mom and Dad are the coaches and captains. Our say trumps all.
But they are integral to Team Pair-- their participation, their involvement, and their feedback makes the Team get better every day.
We are trying to teach our kids, and ourselves, that at the end of the day, your family is supposed to be comprised of those who love you, who believe in you. While we might not always agree with each other, or even understand each other, this space is supposed to be safe, welcoming, and... well, a TEAM.