First off, that was a great show. But, I wanted the title, so I stole it.
In December of this year, my wife and kids will meet a family member from my side of the family for the first time.
The First time.
It’s honestly not for a lack of trying, but then again, they’ve met people that matter more than most of my family members. Let me explain.
Opportunities have risen, but…well…they Jeff Flake’d.
The first opportunity to meet someone from my side of the family, was at my wedding. My dad, who i’ve had a contentious relationship with for a long time, bailed three days before the wedding.
As I predicted he would.
When he confirmed, I told my soon to be bride, he would find a way to back out days before. I was truly hoping I would be wrong. But, I knew it, just because I knew him. I knew his pattern. I, for a second, was hopeful he wouldn’t. That he could share our big day, since he, as predicted, did not make it to my first wedding.
He made it to my older brother’s wedding.
He made it to my younger brother’s wedding.
He’s made it to neither of my weddings.
That would’ve been the first time he had the chance to meet my wife. I don’t think he will get the chance, as I, the grudge holder extraordinaire, have cut him from my life.
How could I be harsh like that?
Well, I’ve managed to fill those voids that family members have left. Despite having a plethora of uncles and aunties, and cousins, we really didn’t grow up with them past the age of 11. On my father’s side, they legit did not like my mother, so at one point, we just stopped going around them. On my mother’s side, well, they are all so spread out, we again just stopped.
I’ve never longed for family members. Didn’t have to. Some people just feel like family. If that makes sense.
In high school, I started filling out my dream extended family, and it’s continued into my adulthood. You see, sometimes you meet people, and you just realize that they are more than friends.
They are family. They are people that you would throw yourself in front of a bullet to save them. My wife, has met about 12 people like that. My extended, but closer family. People I can go weeks without talking to, and then all of a sudden get a text and it’s like not missing a beat.
That’s my family. The ones who I know, if I call, they will be there. (TRUST ME I WOULD NEVER CALL, just a series of text messages.) There are friends that I’ve grown close to their families, and to me that’s what life is about. Finding people you mesh with. Share those life experiences with.
I have those people. They are nearly every race you could imagine. Our family reunion would be pretty amazing.
Back to the point though, for the first time in december, my darling nephew and his mom are coming for a visit.
I hadn’t realized that my wife hadn’t met anyone that is related to me, until she brought it up the other day. This is my younger brother’s son. I think part of the last few years of not having family around, is my fault. Pushing people away after my mother and brother died, was kind of my thing.
As I’m getting older, I do realize the importance of family. I want my kids to know my family. But, i want them to also not have boundaries of what families “are supposed to be,” because family means something different to me. The family we have inside our four walls, I want them to have a lasting bond. We try to build activities and things that long after we are gone our children can carry them on. I’ve always wanted that type of family.
I just hope that my children realize that family isn’t just related by blood. It’s whoever you form a tight bond with, because those people are always going to be there for you.