This past weekend was Family Day weekend. That actually makes no sense, as Family Day is a day and I just referenced it as a weekend…however, we had the Monday off as it was Family Day. In essence, this created a long weekend. Phew, thank god I clarified that.
I, for one, actually spent the entire weekend with my actual family. The whole lot of them. A night with my brother, his kids, my other brother and his common-law lady, both their dogs and two cats. I then proceeded to drive another 2 hours to visit my parents and third brother’s homes. I saw my mom, my dad, my brother’s new wife, his kids, his step-kids, his ex-wife, her boyfriend, three dogs and even my new sister-in-law’s father and step-mother. Finally, I finished the night off texting with good friends and cuddling with my cats.
Family is a big, messy, complication nowadays. There is rarely such a thing as the nuclear family and there are few expectations of happily ever after. Hell, I have friends who only went to see other friends and probably count them closer to family then they do their own siblings. Like Modern Family, there is no one way to have a family now. Like The New Normal, there is no normal anymore.
I know for me – well, my sister-in-law, my common-law sister-in-law, my new sister-in-law and even my ex-sister-in-law are all important people in my life. The ex is the closest thing that I’ve ever had to a sister and in a weird way her boyfriend is like my brother-in-law. And the new additions to my brother’s family? Well, those would now be my niece and nephew.
There is no wrong way to have a family. At least not in my books. So, go out and appreciate yours, whatever version that may be. Don’t feel guilty for enjoying time with them and don’t feel guilty for not enjoying time with them…just remember there is no real expectation anymore and you shouldn’t feel bad for who you love…or are forced to tolerate.
So, embarassingly enough, like Erma Bombeck says, “I come from a family where gravy is considered a beverage.”
The Ginga Ninja