Whenever we take a ride with my mom, I always let her sit in the front seat. #1 Because we have a tiny car and she would be very uncomfortable sandwiched between my two kids and the dogs who sit on their respective laps #2. Because as my elder I feel like she deserves that level of respect– to get the front seat.
So there my kids and I were, squished like SARDINES, in the backseat while my mother and husband luxuriated in the front-impervious to the grievances us backseat drivers were privy to. And you know what I learned? That sitting in the backseat, while hot and not all that comfortable, was the best possible way for me to get face-time with my kids- because we were LITERALLY in each other’s faces. There was no where to go, all the devices were dead and basically we were all stuck in that backseat like it or not for a solid two hours.
And when my son said to me, after our long ride, “Mommy We Will Always Remember These Fun Times in the Car” I realized that sitting in the backseat with them was not merely an INCONVENIENCE but something I did that really mattered to them. And here are four reasons why I recommend it to all parents.
#1 It is the best and ONLY way to play a proper game of hangman. Because as my son said, ” You could see what I was doing and I could see what you were doing and we could laugh at each other”.
#2 It is a prime opportunity to MAKE A SECRET HANDSHAKE. That’s right I now have several secret handshakes in the bag and ready to go.
#3 You must help your daughter interpret almost every single line of her Adventure of Tom Sawyer book– because YOU HAVE NO WHERE ELSE YOU CAN POSSIBLY GO and since you are now one of them- if they must endure TORTURE- then you must too.
#4 Sitting in the back seat breaks down that grownup/child barrier that the front versus backseat implies. When you are in the back- you are now ON THEIR TEAM. And kids- no matter how big or small- clearly enjoy time spent with their parents where matriarchal hierarchy and rules DO NOT APPLY