One of my fondest memories of young adulthood is time spent playing board games with family and close friends around the holidays. Though I don’t believe we did this often, those few times occupy prime space in my memory. The comfort. The familiarity. The fun. The irreverence. The easy conversation and laughter. The camaraderie. The innocence. I have vivid visions of where I sat and who I was with. I remember the feelings and the faces, the laughter and the comfort. I don’t remember the game. I don’t remember what we ate or what we drank. But I remember well the safety, the love, the joy in the moment. Like Kick the Can with my older siblings in my young childhood, game night with those same people created a very special place of inclusion, warmth, joyful teasing and the forgiveness only a sibling could or would provide.
Though never fully realized at a preplanned game night, the magic happens when friends get together for no other reason than being together, and game night just comes about. Last night, sick in bed with a nasty cold, I listened (ok, eaves-dropped) as two of my kids and their friends played Uno. The sounds were joyous, ridiculous, innocent and fun to hear. On a Saturday night, no less, two of our young people with those they have chosen to bring into their lives. It was a sweet connection between them. And it may well have been the making of a memory.