Family. Friends. Everyone in between. What words define these to you? What do they mean to me? I started writing this post a few days earlier, but struggled to get across what I wanted you to see. After spending Easter Sunday lunch with my “family’s” family, I’m glad I can now make it clearer for you all to agree or disagree 😉 Confused?? Let me see…..
(Haha I rhyme, aren’t I clever? – so says me!!)
My “family” are made up of not just my immediate and extended biological family members, but also very special close friends that have become a part of the fabric of my life. To some people, family only defines those that they are related to by blood. Others call close friends “family”, people who are not kin but are often closer in relationship to them. One friend of mine calls mates he has known a long time his “brothers” and their Mum is his mum too. He also maintains contact with his biological mother who he still calls Mum but hasn’t always been the closest to. Another friend calls her Dad and step-mother her “parents” and her half-brother her “brother”. She will also refer to her mother as “my mum”, but has not had a relationship with the woman who gave birth to her for a very long time. My “family” – my Mum, my Dad, my children, my husband, nieces, nephews, one brother but not really the other – mean the WORLD to me and I like to show it. The members of my other “family” are near the top of my list and I deeply cherish the importance of them in my life just as if they are biologically related.
So, like I said, I spent Easter Sunday eating a delicious roast beef with my “family’s” family. Made up of close friends (a couple who are more than ten years older than me); a close friend (their daughter) and her partner (who are more than 10 years younger than me) and their parents and/or grandparents depending on the angle from which you see. Through mutual interests, similar life experiences and common
mis-understandings, I’ve formed magical and wonderful relationships with two generations of the same family and an affectionate and endearing affiliation with the oldest generation. I can rely on these people through both good times and in bad, often much more than I can some of my own family clan.
I have another close friend that is greatly involved in my life and me too in hers. I have gotten to know and bond with both her and her little one more so than have some of her near family. I am delighting in this special friendship and treat her young daughter like one of my kin, especially as I do not have a relationship with and am yet to meet, one of my own family members. I have another close friend that I have known for nearly two decades and while at times we may not be in touch often, yet other times speak regularly, we always carry each other in our hearts and in our minds and she and I will always be “family”.
So for me, “family” comes in many forms and in different degrees, just as friendship comes in all shapes and sizes and the ones in between. I have some friends that are definitely considered my “family”, some that are most certainly an acquaintance and those who fit somewhere in the middle. No matter whether I’m related by blood or by bond, I take this family business seriously!