Leading by Example

She tells me that they had to stop playing Settlers of Catan because it wasn’t doing any their marriage any favors.

But see, that’s why my friend has such a good relationship with her husband; because they both value the health of their marriage far beyond the brief enjoyment of any board game.

We’re not quite there yet.

Finance may be Oliver’s career, but Settlers of Catan is his calling. I invited his friends over for his birthday and they started selling sheep swaps and ore options. For those less versed in the intricacies of the free market, those are types of financial derivatives.

Basically, he wins every. single. time.

You know, I think I’m a pretty good mother. I devour all the information on baby raising that’s out there, spend hours upon hours gazing into those big brown baby eyes and playing with plastic trucks with Zoe. I have a natural talent for teaching and teaching true principles at that. I pretty much haven’t felt impatience or irritation towards Zoe since she was four months old.

… But then I sit at the dining room table, staring sullenly at the cards in my hand and at the dice that my husband just rolled and I sulk. If I can’t even play a board game like a well-adjusted and peaceful adult, that pretty rules out the possibility that I’m a great mom, right?

I’m so damn good at teaching that I forget that the most important method of teaching is teaching by example. I’d have to actually demonstrate A) what a healthy marriage looks like, B) that being loving is more important than just about anything else and C) that it is, in fact, possible to be happy without winning Settlers of Catan ever. Like not even once.

And then there is of course the collateral damage of ruining a perfectly good evening with my husband.

So Zoe, babe, Zocchini, according to the box I’ve got about seven more years to before you’ll be building settlements and cities in Catan rather than just swallowing the choking hazards and by that time, baby girl, I will give you a happy home with a mom that knows how to be gracious as opposed to just griping about lumber scarcity.

Hopefully sooner than that. Because shoot, you and your dad are so worth it.


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