Family is an interesting thing. You cannot choose it, at least not all of it. You gain consciousness one day and find yourself inside a family. It is what it is. Very few of us know what it is like to not have a family. My heart goes out to those who find themselves in that sad situation. That said, many of those unfortunate people will often build a family of some type.
A family is a group of people, each with their own quirks, good and bad, that accept you with all your warts. You might wish for a Norman Rockwell family, but without failure there is a relative hugging a bottle or doing meth in the garage. Still, everyone has care and concern for him. That is what family is.
Some families are large, filling auditoriums. Mine is small. But big or small, family is always wonderful, no matter how many squabbles you may have.
Mom was an amazing person. A depression era coal miner’s daughter, she worked hard and put some cracks in the glass ceiling. She was our guide, our point person. She was always there, even when she suffered long-term difficulties. She passed away June 15, 2005. She is dearly missed, and thought of every day.
My Father is Archie Bunker incarnate. We all have a father, but that does not mean that we connect with him. He and I are always on two different roads heading in opposite directions.
My Dad, now that is a totally different story. A Marine and gentle soul, he is the glue that mended my Mom’s broken dreams and lifted our small family up. Anyone who continues to build Habitat for Humanity homes in their mid-80’s is a person of high honor. While I have a father, this man is my Dad.
My younger Sister is the Energizer Bunny. An artist and theater director, she is always on-the-go and full of cheer. She has two children, so that makes me an uncle twice over. Her son walks in my sister’s artistic footsteps, though much more low-key. His younger sister has her mother’s giddiness, and has become an educator, taking a more social route following her father’s lead. The father, now no longer apart of the family, is a police officer.
I am single, after two failed marriages. Despite that, I consider my last ex to still be apart of my life, and thus family. She is a wonderful person, full of lively bubble and cheer, and is always in my thoughts.
I am honored with one child, from my first marriage. She is an amazingly strong person, who has handled unique personal matters with surprising strength and a clear mind. Even as a child, when faced with extraordinary issues she showed a rationale that would put most adults to shame. She means more to me than she will ever know.
Family supports, protects, and lifts us, even though they may poke and pry. While my family is more far flung than most, they are in my thoughts every day. I am so thankful for them.