I am sitting here enjoying a lazy night of World Series junk food and mindless internet window shopping and blog maintenance; thinking about how much I love just existing in the same space as my husband and our children. I love interacting with them, but I also love just knowing that we are all in the same place even when we are not doing something physically all together. I am not close to either of my parents presently. I was close to both of them at different times when I was younger, but we've grown distant in the last decade or so. I still see them ever couple of months and they make an effort to contact the kids on holidays. I am certain that I have equal part in the separation, and need to do some more soul searching to figure out what I can do differently. More importantly if I should do anything differently to improve our relationship or just let it be what it is presently and be thankful for the relationship and time that we have together. I often find myself buried in frustration because the relationship is not what I hope or expect. I attempted conversation with both parents, separately because they are divorced. While our interaction changes briefly (as a show of mercy, I think); it always reverts to the infrequent and subtle frustrated version for all parties.
Family is such an interesting concept. I have friends that I consider more family than some of my actual blood family. I know that some of that is my military brat upbringing and even more to do with my military service during which I was lucky enough to meet my husband and three best friends, who are without question "my family". As I matured into adulthood, my concept of life, love, politics, responsibility, and opportunity greatly changed from some of the concepts that my parents believe and those that affect their current behavior. I, without question, love them. I know that I am more tolerant with political differences and life choices that differ from mine with complete strangers than I am with family and close friends. I am critical of myself, my family, and my friends. I have little tolerance for whining and even less for people who do not learn from life's lessons and continue to repeat the same bad decisions or marinate themselves in pity for the bad decisions they've made instead of moving forward and making better ones. I believe severely that people have an obligation to themselves and each other to realize their potential and set plans to achieve their goals.
The most profound part of being a soldier and a "brat" is that friends from the military can not talk for years and when we run into each other, its as if we just spoke yesterday. I do not have that kind of relationship with most of my blood relatives.
There are, also, the family members that I never really got to know growing up; cousins, aunts, uncles, great aunts and uncles, etc. Quite honestly neither I nor they made the effort to really establish and maintain a relationship since I became an adult and responsible for my own actions, relationships, and decisions.
So, I am at a place in life where I now need to consider if, for the sake of my children, I need to reach out to the long lost, forgive the ones that I had/have a "beef" with, or to just forget it and let my kids surround themselves with the family and friends that we know loves and supports us and who we love and support.
Is it time to Make the Change to allow myself to accept life and my family relationships for what they are and let go of the frustration for what they are not or time to Make the Change to make more of an effort to establish, fix, or improve my (our) family relationships?
It is time to Make the Change!