Blessed + Family + Georgia
I think that’s the appropriate term for how I feel. The older I get the more I understand how truly blessed I am. Not that I didn’t already know, but the appreciation for it changes as you get older.
This weekend my family met up for our belated Christmas celebration in Georgia. Last year we decided to start going places for Christmas versus buying gifts. This year we picked a cabin off Air BnB in Blue Ridge Georgia. We made no plans in particular other than hanging out together for 4 days. We talked, played games, hiked, sat in the hot tub, and even took on an escape room. It was the perfect family vacation.
The reason I say I’m blessed is the fact that I realize not all families are this way. I truly can say we all enjoyed each other’s company and no one person was left out or uncomfortable. This is truly remarkable for a family of three children with spouses, different careers, and different thoughts on life in general. Did we agree with everything each other said, absolutely not.
It was brought to my attention that many families don’t function this way. There is tension over relationships, money, careers, and lifestyle choices among many families. Don’t get me wrong, we have those as well. The difference is our ability to either talk it out and move on, or to set aside our differences and accept each other for who we are. I don’t agree with every decision people in my family make, nor do they probably agree with mine. At the end of the day, we can appreciate our differences and still get along.
There’s a lot to be said for this mentality. I was born and raised a certain way, as we all were. Somewhere along the way however, many decided their way or opinions were more important than those around them. Family or not. We are all privileged to have the freedom to live how we want. While there is a difference between right and wrong, there is a very large grey zone where opinions are meant to flourish. Maybe if more people could let those opinions go, and just accept other people for who they are and where they come from, we would be a little better off. Not asking for world peace here. Just a little more tolerance is all.
As I said, we had a great weekend. To me, family is so important. In my everyday life, it influences me. I moved halfway across the United States afer Vet school. I left everything I had grown to know and love for 25+ years. The funny thing is, I never really intended to leave. It was just the right decision for me, my career, and my marriage. We wanted something different. It crushed my family to see me move so far away, but in a way it made me feel closer to them. In the past when I planned trips home it was almost an obligation. Sure, I enjoyed time at home, but I didn’t always look forward to those trips. I just knew I had to go.
Now that I’m a flight away versus 3 hours, I make plans to see my family before anything else. I look forward to those trips for weeks and I appreciate every second while I’m with them. It’s changed my overall appreciation for my family. I see them in a different way now that I don’t live down the road. It’s funny how that works. While I don’t love that I don’t get to see them as much, I have grown as a person because of it.
Family and friends are what make life worth living. Enjoy the time you have. We aren’t guaranteed much time here, so we have to make the most of it. Arguments are good sometimes. We learn from listening to others and trying to put ourselves in their positions.
It takes change to grow!