What does it mean to be a family?

family 1I’m 32 years old, and I’m still learning what it means to be a family.  I feel like what I know gets added to on a daily basis.  They don’t know it, but a family member really hurt my feelings today.  So much so, it brought me to tears.  We’ll call this person “M”. Now I’ll take some responsibility and say that perhaps I do not communicate as often as I should with M, and that perhaps when I do communicate, I will sometimes communicate too much.  This gives them fodder to worry over.  Believe me when I say, lesson learned.  But there is some behavior and some things, that when said or even implied, hurt.  It strikes a blow and cuts deep, because it is family who does it.  People you trust to be there, no matter what.  Doesn’t matter how stupid or annoying or messed up things get, they’ll still be there.  They may roll their eyes at you, poke fun, or never let you live some of that shit down, but they are still there.  They will root for you, even if you are the underdog with what seems like no chance in hell to win the game.  But when I think about it, perhaps that’s too much for one person to do.  This is why we need a family.  A family isn’t one person, it is many.

Tonight, M cut me deeply and she doesn’t even know how much. I know I can fix it and things will be on a good track again, but I hate that M, of all the people in my family, we should be the closest.  So often, it is M who makes me feel like I am not good enough.  Or that I’m a loser for the failures I’ve had.  I am simply human. But family decided to show me something tonight. Two other family members rose up and made me feel better.  My father and my aunt.

It was an interesting chat with my father.  I can count on one hand the number of heart to hearts or wisdom sharing moments we’ve had in my entire life.  Tonight is one of them.  He shared how and why he sees me as being very different from M.  I needed to hear that tonight.  I needed to hear that the hard work I’ve put in to NOT be like M, is working and that I’m someone different.  Dad’s insight helped me feel better about who I am, and how to approach life.  I knew when I called him that he would say pretty much exactly what he did as far as what to do.  He shared his pride over me.  Says he never worries or is scared that I won’t some how make it in this world.  That I’m bright and positive and funny and bubbly.  That I have a huge brain and that I love people.  He said that I don’t let fear or stress or worry take control of me and control what I do.  It is very true.  It doesn’t mean I don’t get scared… cuz I definitely do.  It’s the ability to power through.  It’s funny, for a moment I was hearing Granddad, only it was my father.  Guess I get my strength and stubborn ambition from a few places in my life.  Dad’s thoughts were that you don’t stop.  You don’t worry about what other people in the family think.  You stay heads down and focused and you work on the things that you need to make you feel happy, content, safe and fulfilled and you back away from the people who do not serve towards those goals.

brave1

Then a bit later, I talked to my Aunt.  She affirmed that M does love me and my children, a fact I already knew.  But I did need to hear it too.  I just don’t like the cutting remarks.  Or the fear.  or the blatant favoritism of my children.  I adore my aunt.  She has always been someone I enjoy seeing and catching up with.  We so often have secret laughs from across the room about something.  I hate that life gets so busy that I don’t see my family as often as I’d like.  Because many of them, truly are cool people., who I love dearly and support 100%.

After talking with my family, I felt a lot better about things.  I’m still hurt over M, but I know we’ll get through it.  We are family.  We are stuck with each other.  It’s what families do.

lipstick kiss

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