I think I’m starting to sound like my mother and my grandmother, which means either I am getting older or I have acquired some knowledge along the way. Either one is good with me.
As the Easter Holiday is approaching and I listen to people talk, I think what happened?
I remember Easter as a child. There were Easter Egg Hunts with the other children in the family. I remember Easter bonnets and black shiny shoes and white cotton gloves. But mostly I remember this holiday like the rest when everyone did their best to get together because the holiday meant nothing without the rest of the family.
Fast forward it thirty years later and I have to ask what happened?
What happened to wanting to be together?
Why do people fight over who is coming to dinner and who is not coming if so and so is coming?
What happened to family disagreements ending in forgiveness?
When did it become more important to be right than to forgive?
When did siblings stop caring for each other and taking care of your elderly family members be something to be proud of?
When did we stop inviting grama and not speaking to mom?
When did we start sleeping in a warm comfy bed while your parents are homeless and you don’t bring them into your house?
When did we stop calling to check on your family members who are not well?
Did I miss something?
I must have.
In our house, the way I was raised, you disagree but still respected.
Our home to this day is a place that is shared by who needs it. Our dinners include our friends who are alone because life does sometimes end up that way.
There is always food for one more.
And no one would ever be turned away who had nowhere to sleep.
I am saddened by what I have seen and heard and I wonder what will happen to family in the next twenty years if we continue to be right instead of together.
I am not blind to the world, I do know that sometimes family is not a good thing for many reasons, but I have to wonder are the other reason a good reason to throw family out the door?
I have spent already four days cooking for my family who will join me on Easter Sunday for dinner. Some of the family are blood-related and others are choice related.
Why so many days of cooking for one meal? It’s not that they expect it, it’s my way of saying this means a lot to me and I want you to enjoy all of it. It means I spent a lot of time looking forward to spending this day with you. I learned that from, my grandmother.
I am grateful to my grandmother who treated the family as a way of life. I am grateful to her for teaching me to open my home and our table to our friends and family like she did. I am grateful that she taught us forgiveness. I am also grateful that she is no longer around to see the way life has become in a society that no longer values family.
I would love to tell you that what my grandmother taught all of us has stayed with all. But I have recently learned that’s not true. I am sad for those family members who have forgotten how wonderful our childhood was because we had all of each other.
The best I can do is pass down to my family what my grandmother taught me and hope that one day her influence will come back to those who have lost their way. The ones who lost what family is.
Your family is not what someone has or what they can give you. They are the ones who call to see how you are. Who checks on you when you are not well. They walk through life with you.
They are the ones who you play with, disagree with you and who you forgive because, without family, you are alone. You would not be who you are without each other. Family is the foundation of life. They are the being of life and there at the ending of life.
When did we lose that family is a gift?