Thinking about Family


This is an incomplete rough draft that I want to add to. Old post dated Jan 1, 1010:

“As I wrote that title I realized I’m almost always thinking about family. My immediate family or my extended family or my married into family. Then there are the friends who are so close they feel like family, I sometimes wish they were family and often refer to them as family in the spiritual sense. Especially the girls….they are the sisters I never had but always wanted.

I’ve been looking through photo albums of family and friends. I’m working on my assignment for this week’s Painting the Heart group (another name for our art therapy group). I decided to start scanning some more of our precious photos  before they disenegrate. I picked one photo that is framed and out of the way. I keep it on the top of a book case in the hall near the guest room. It’s a photo of me as a very young baby, maybe 4 or 5 months old (I need to ask my mom if she remembers the date).” to be continued but I don’t remember where I was going with this train of  thought.

Continued Feb 15, 2010:

Our 25 yr old daughter sent me this link today:

It’s a great article with photos of a Grandmother’s home and the memories there.

It reminded me of a writing assignment our daughter wrote while still in college. It was about the house I spent the last 11 years of my childhood in before I got married. Her grandparents house – the house she spent the 3rd and 4th week of her life while my mom helped me get established in motherhood and continued to visit several times a year until they downsized and moved into a retirement community about 10 years ago.

It’s funny how we are always trying to improve the houses we live in. How we laugh at the older generation’s choice of carpet or appliance colors.  And yet in the last days of our Grandparent’s lives (and after they are gone) it’s the familiarity and the memories held in those garish colored carpets and appliances that warm us.

I’m thankful for my family. But I live in the shadow of both the blessings and curses unique to my family’s particular story (as we all do). On any given day I’m tempted to see only the bad or only the good. Not only are both realities evident, it’s getting harder for me to tell which family traditions to embrace and which one’s to drop. I say that as though it’s just a matter of knowing then doing. After 28 years of marriage I still refer back to the story in the first 21 years of my life as the context for why I am ‘the way I am’. And now my children are old enough to begin to do the same. I will continue to think about the particular family I was placed in and the impact that is making on the family I now participate in making. ‘Living out the life that I’ve been given…’ as Amy Grant sang not too long ago……


One response »

  1. Very thoughtful! Makes me think of our family’s changing traditions. They change not because we refuse to take them into consideration anymore but because our needs and interests change as the family gets older. We still go back and reminisce on the old traditions every once in a while with nostalgia.

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