On the recent trip I made, I had not seen my Aunt, Uncle or cousins in over 25 years. I truly hadn’t realized it had been that long and certainly didn’t intend it to happen. They are on my Father’s side of the clan and since he doesn’t stay in touch with me or them particularly the tie was weakened.
Seeing them was like old home week! It was amazing to be able to pick up where we had left off so long ago as if no time at all had passed. They were able to share valued memories of my Mother (gone now over 20 years) and even a few tales of my Father. Best of all was a sense that these are the folks that I come from. I am not sure I had ever needed that feeling before. But enjoying my relatives effusiveness, and ability to talk nonstop, I realized this is where I got those qualities and suddenly it all made much more sense.
I made sense! It is almost like looking in a mirror of sorts and realizing who I am and what I mean.
It is invaluable to have that feeling and that knowing, that it doesn’t matter how much time passes, what successes or lessons learned take place, where I travel to, and who I meet, this part of my family will always be there. They are wonderfully grounded, real, practical, and an integral part of who I am. While parts closer, like my Father, may not be nearly so available or open, these individuals provide a connective warmth and tie that will bind in the best way forever.
I would encourage you to find the ties that bind with a bow and not a suffocating knot in your own family. Yes, friends that have become family count too. I’ve never believed blood was thicker than water, based on my own experiences. And now I know that if you have the luxury of family you can talk with, laugh with, and share time with however rarely, do it. Don’t wait, don’t put it off, and don’t think it will be there next time.