My mom has always believed that family is the most important thing in life. In her words, “We are a system of connecting parts that support and sometimes kick the ass of one who isn’t working correctly. We help each other out and always try to love each other, even if we don’t always like each other.” Living in my family, this has become my belief too.
My family isn’t the most orthodox. Instead of the oldest person as the head of the family, my mom is. She puts almost everything together. Although, I must admit, I prefer my mom to my crotchety old great grandma. My mom is one of those people who can lead you with grace and skill.
She uses her people skills to get the family together, even if they think, which happens often enough, that “you won’t catch me in the same room as him!” We’re a loving feuding family. There is always a big fight going on, but it means never being bored at family gatherings. With all the clashing personalities, of the family, it’s hard to believe we all come together at all. But when we do, it’s spectacular. Like when my grandma had heart surgery a few years ago.
When my mom got the call, it was close to midnight. The nurses didn’t think anyone would come that late at night. But my grandma knew different: “Bet you ten dollars that at least ten people show up in less than an hour.” She still says it was the easiest ten dollars she ever won. Within thirty minutes, my mom had woke up the entire family, and everyone made their way to the hospital. Amidst the tears running down her face, my grandma also had one of those sappy dopey little smiles on her face. And so did all of my uncles, cousins, aunts, and my great grandma, on who I have never really seen smile sincerely before.
My family does scare me sometimes, the way they flip flop with their moods. One moment screaming mad, and then lovey-dovey. But I have no problem giving any one of them help if they ask, and sometimes when they don’t. I haven’t had to rely on them for anything big yet, but I know that the moment I call, they will be there; willing, if not always able. And that security helps me not to worry about the future. I have this faith, because I believe in family.
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