Friday, April 10, 2009

Family ties

This time of the year is all about family for me. As a child I remember large gatherings of my extensive family in one place or another with an abundance of different characters in whose company and familiarity one could indulge. I think, somehow, I took it for granted. All those important people were always there and always the same. We are fewer now, and yet more. Some of the prominent characters have moved on to greener pastures, others have just begun their sojourn within the comforting confines of the family. Branches have been added as other families have joined the original one. We are all related. Somehow.

I am determined, now, not to take it for granted. To enjoy and file away to memory all the bits and pieces that make up the memory of Family. I want to indulge in each age group within the herd, know what they want, feel and know. Understand them and remember how they are, so in years from now I can say: Way back then... and the memories will be a part of all of us.

Last night we had an awesome gathering of family. Only 2 generations, and only those that still live in these parts. But we still numbered 12 people (if we count Jordan who slept through the whole event). I talked more than I have for a long time. On every topic from the end of the world to life choices. I hope I listened too. But we chatted non stop. And I could because I feel accepted. Because they know me. Because I am part of the family. I can speak my mind and be part of their stories. I belong.

As luck would have it I will be getting an added dose of family over this long weekend of family-ness. Part of my first family is in town, here to indulge their craving for sun, sand and sea. And they are here on mass. It is so important to me to keep abreast with that part of me. I share the same blood line. They are part of who I am genetically and personally. They watched me grow up, change over the years (hopefully), accepted my addition to our family and then, in turn, were excited and happy when our new little bundles joined the ranks. I belong there too.

On top of that, the following week another extension of that extensive family will find their way here. And then Mum arrives for a flying visit. I am smiling now as it seems that it can't possibly be just this time of year that is all about family, for once my first family have returned to their respective homes, those from my new family who no longer live here, descend upon us. We will all be together. Three Generations: Parents, three children and their spouses and all the grandchildren. Life for me is all about relationships and experiences. I hope they will always remain entwined.

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