The value of a strong family
This was a good day. My brother, Chris and sister-in-law, Sonya came to our campground at around 11:00 and we all had lunch in Williamsburg, then drove up to Gloucester,Va., about 30 minutes away. They wanted to see how this RV thing works and I think they were inspired to find a way to do it themselves one day. It was a good visit. They said they want to come stay in a cabin when we are up there in Gloucester next month. I’m going to look forward to that, knowing how precious the weekends are to them. It was nice just hanging out with them, with no expectations or baggage. It was easy, and I need easy right now.
I realized today that if I had moved anywhere else I would not be able to get my feet on the ground so quickly. It is great to have my family here to fill in the empty space that was created in my heart when I left my daughters and my few close friends in California. Even though I have always had friends, I tend to be more cautious in relationships than most people. I need a lot of time to develop trust and to understand how much to give and how much to ask for. Yet, friendships blossomed over time in California, and I felt like I really was surrounded by people who loved me and who I loved.
Over the past seven years I worked hard to strengthen my relationships with my daughters, Jennifer and Rebecca, and to slowly nurture and deepen the few, true friendships I had with Jeanne, and Karen and Michele and my various yoga friends. I had to trust that they would still hold me close in their hearts just because I knew I would hold them close in mine. I knew it wouldn’t be easy, leaving all of that, but I also knew I would blend right in with people who I know and who know me.
My family is not perfect, but it is something solid that I know I can count on. It is so easy being with them. I know what to expect. There doesn’t seem to be any judgment, at least not much, and the teasing has mellowed down to a trickle these days. I trust them. All of them. I know I can tell them anything and they will still love me. That is a good feeling when I am not even sure where I will be living or what I will be doing in the next few months, much less who I am in this current moment.
I think that they respect me for making such a hard choice to pick up and leave my very full, very active life and start over here. I know they are glad I came “back home,” and fully expect that in no time we will be calling each other regularly, going to lunch or to some event or another, or to one or the other’s house, and comparing notes on how hard it is to raise kids and lose weight and keep going to work everyday. Life is hard. There are times when you simply want to give up and wallow in self pity. A good family understands that, but won’t let you feel sorry for yourself any longer than necessary. I feel fortunate to have such a family. I just wanted to acknowledge that.
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