I want to talk about FAMILY!!!
I’ve been thinking on this topic since I first started blogging, and well truthfully I’ve just left this page setting empty.
I started this post the first week in August, titled it, Family, wrote a sentence and just left it.
Why do you ask?
Because, I have been giving this topic a lot, and I mean a lot, of thought!!
Everything that I write has to come straight from my heart, that’s important to me!!
Otherwise…. for me at least, then what is the point of blogging?
Family ….. one single word ….. yet it can mean a thousand different things …. depending upon who you ask!!!
Have you ever thought about it …………. really thought about it?
What is Family??????
The Traditional Family!
Growing up, family to me was the traditional type; that’s simply what family was.
I don’t think I can name one friend of mine as a child; that was not raised by both parents. Yes, there were some sadly, that only had one parent due to death!
But not one that I can remember was because of divorce; it was just unheard of when I grew up.
The family was simply the traditional type…….. Dad, Mom, and Kids!!!!
The family was close-knit!!!! You would see each other often, the folks visiting and all the kids outside having a good old time!!!
The family was there to share joys and sorrows, help one another in time of need, attend Church together, have meals together. Simply put family was there for one another!!!
And of course, everybody going to Grandmas’ house for Christmas, a time of food, gifts, laughter, and wonderful memories!
That’s what family was for me as a child!!!
Fast forward just a few years, the family started changing!!
The times of “The Waltons” that my generation grew up watching; slowly started to fade away.
I know many of you reading this, don’t have a clue what I’m talking about… but Google it sometime, watch an episode; it was all about family and the way it should be, was meant to be!!!
But sadly, my generation started changing all that!
We grew up, got married, got busy with our jobs, kids, activities and everything else we could think of in our fast-paced world.
And what happened?
We didn’t hold each other, traditions and marriage sacred as our parents and grandparents did.
And divorce started becoming more common, and the traditional family started to suffer.
I know, I’ve been there…. which brings me to the next era of the family…
The Single Mom Family!
My kids were young teens when divorce hit our little family and tore it apart.
Everybody hurts, no doubt about it.
But I think the children really get hurt the most!!
It’s so very sad what we as adults do to our kids because we don’t hold marriage and family sacred, as we should.
I can still remember how very bad the divorce tore my children’s lives upside down.
Oh my…… simply oh my!!!!!
Being a single Mom is tough, really tough!!!
You are suddenly forced to take care of everything; the house, the bills, a lot of times a job for the first time, everything on your own.
Plus, you’re also trying to help your children through a very hard, hurtful time, and deal with your own hurts and frustrations.
My hat is off to all single Moms everywhere…. it takes a very loving, determined woman to be a successful single parent, it really does!!!
The Single Dad Family!
And in today’s world…. the word family has become a lot of single-parent Dads raising their children.
I never imagined as a child, divorce would be such a big part of our society.
And I never even considered there would be divorced Dad’s as single parents.
But goodness, now they are…. and a bunch of them.
My hat is really off to them! I think we as women are just loving and nurturing by nature, well, those of us that are good Moms anyway.
But men, bless their hearts…. God just did not make a man to be a Mom. They just aren’t wired that way.
I think they have a really hard time trying to fill a Mother’s place in a single dad family.
They have it difficult too, full-time job, the school activities, homework, laundry, groceries, housekeeping, things most men just are not familiar with doing.
Add in those tough situations with their daughters reaching puberty, that boys don’t have and I would imagine Dad wanders what do I say now?
I have the utmost respect for single Dads raising their children, utmost respect!!!
The Blended Family!
Divorce not only brings Single Moms and Dads raising their children. But it also brings along the blended family.
Growing up we watched “The Brady Bunch”, a Dad with three boys and a Mom with three girls, a blended family indeed…
To me back then, it just seemed like a show from Hollywood; but now it’s a reality everywhere!
I have never experienced the blended family of children from both parents.
I would imagine it would be very trying at times; and yet, at other times very rewarding.
I can imagine, the parents would probably hear, “Your not my Mom, or your not my Dad.”
Maybe they would hear, “My Mom doesn’t make pancakes like that.” or “My Dad can fix anything.”
I think it’s probably really hard having a blended family, the kids fussing because they are sharing a bedroom, learning new rules, new traditions.
I really respect these families a lot; that would require a lot of compromising…. my hat is off to all!
Family, it’s ever-changing, isn’t it?
The Mixed Racial Family!
Do I think it is wrong?
No, I do not, not in any way form or fashion.
Some people in our society look down on it, but obviously, they have not really read their Bible about Moses marrying an Ethiopian woman.
You need to read it if you disagree….
You will find it in the Old Testament in Numbers Chapter 12.
It may change your mind about how you feel.
Everybody is equal, no matter background, skin color, or where you were born.
We all should be treated exactly equal. Yet some people still so frown on such families.
Shame on you!
They are family just like you are. Dad, Mom, and Children.
They love and care for each other in their family, just like you do your own family.
So be kind and accepting.
Not one of us has a right to say a word about other people that is unkind, not one of us.
School children have a hard enough time in school today, without our own kids hearing us make cruel remarks and then repeating them to others.
I applaud these families…..
Another new era……. I’m not sure how to put this one.
The Same Sex Family!
Do I agree with it?? No, absolutely not… I do not!
But at the same time, I have no right to judge; that is simply up to God.
So, I simply accept it as something that has taken place in our society today; knowing that I am to treat each person with kindness and respect.
Have you ever stopped to think how the children may feel?
I’m sure they get plenty of love and acceptance in their home.
But quite simply, people and kids can be cruel.
Anything out of the normal brings taunting and ridicule.
Should we be cruel? No, absolutely not.
We should always be kind to everybody, absolutely everybody!
So in ways, I have compassion for the families, I do not agree with same-sex families, but I do imagine it’s difficult for them in some ways as well.
We have all types of families in our world. Even those we wouldn’t normally think of like a family.
The Orphanage Family!
For instance….. have you ever thought about all the children in orphanages?
I have……. often.
They have no real home and parents.
Don’t you imagine they think of each other as a family?
Playing together, learning together, sharing things together…
They simply share everything, every day…. just like a family does.
And don’t you imagine that as some children are adopted and leave the orphanage, don’t you imagine the remaining children miss them, think of them as their brothers and sisters, and are hurt.
Think about all the children and their orphanage family as well!
The Senior Center Family!
They are like family...
Many of them never have one person that visits, ever.
That’s a fact!!!
I have visited different nursing homes and assisted living centers to bring a smile, a listening ear, cards at Christmas.
The majority of them are so lonely, and need visitors, people that care enough to sit a spell with them, just listen.
But they rely on each other, befriend each other, eat together, do activities together.
For many that is all the family, they know in their last days!
By the way, y’all should consider visiting your local nursing home sometime, so many people there need visitors…. consider it, okay…
Isn’t that another form of the family?
Simply put, yes it sure is!
The Homeless Family!
Have you ever really thought about the homeless?
They are people too; yes I know society tends to look down on them; but each and every person in this world matter, are important.
Yes, I’m sure some choose to live that way, well because they have gotten used to it; it is their comfort zone now.
But I truly believe most people never planned to be homeless, don’t want to be on the streets, without a home, a real bed, a kitchen to cook in, a family to love them.
But unfortunately it is a big part of our society today, and I find it heartbreaking.
And I also think of them as a group of people that make up a family.
After all, as we have discussed through each section, a family is simply a group of people that share their lives together.
And that is what the homeless do as well.
They often eat together, share time with one another, look out for each other; and most importantly they understand each other.
That makes a family…
None of us ever probably get close enough to care for them, listen to their stories, understand what happened to cause them to be there.
But they each understand the next persons’ plight, they are there, they know.
So see, there is a group of people that make up the homeless family; as sad as that may be.
The Work Family!
This may sound silly to some, but I think employees can be a family of sort.
Good grief you spend forty plus hours a week together, some even more than that.
You share meetings, tasks, and lunchtimes together.
You help one another with work tasks, talk, share, listen… you come to care about one another.
Maybe get together after work or on weekends to have fun activities together.
And if you have worked for a long period of time at one place, you have probably befriended many to know all about their own families at home, their children by name.
All of that, to me, makes a sort of family in the workplace.
The Church Family!
This is one family nobody will deny if they attend Church.
Being a part of a Church family is so awesome!
I pray you are part of a Church somewhere; if not consider it.
I have had the pleasure of being part of three Church families in my lifetime and was so very blessed in each.
There are no words to describe the closeness you share with your Church family.
To this day, I can walk into either three Churches and know, that I know, that I am welcome and loved.
Your Church family are not only your friends, and in some cases your own family, but they are also your closest family of all.
Together, you praise God, study the Bible, share one another’s joys and sorrows, pray together, often eat together, share an important part of your life together.
Your welcome with open arms, firm handshakes and hugs, and you’re loved.. simply as you are, just for you.
There’s nothing like having a Church family!!
The Military Family!
I can not start to express my gratefulness and respect that I have for each and every man and woman that has served and is serving in the military, fighting to keep our country free.
Where would this nation be without their sacrifices, for some the ultimate sacrifice?
I think it must take a very special person to be willing to fight for our country, our freedom.
I truly respect each and every person in our military. Have you stopped to think about the families they leave behind when they go to fight for our country?
I feel for all of them, the wives, husbands, children, parents, grandparents, siblings they leave here holding down the home front while they fight for our freedom.
We need to keep them all in our prayers, help in any way we can!
I can’t start to imagine the life of a military family.
But at the same time…. when I think of the military family.
I also think of the group of them together in a foreign country together.
To me, they are a military family.
They train, sleep and eat together.
They share their letters from home, family stories, show off pictures of their loved ones.
They share so very much!
I would imagine they share the good times with laughter, and are there for one another with the sorrowful times as well.
They befriend each other, bond; a bond that most of us will probably never understand.
They not only fight our enemies, but many give their lives to save others in their group.
That is a family, an honest to goodness military family.
A type of family that deserves ALL of our honor, appreciation, and respect!
The family is a variety of things to everybody, from all walks of life.
I think that is what makes it so wonderful!
We don’t have to be blood, to be a family.
A family is simply a group of people that share their time and life together, lean on each other, depend on and help one another.
Yes, that is also the meaning of a good friend, but to me, it’s also the meaning of Family!
So where ever you are, whatever you do….. I hope and pray you are sharing your life with family.
Whether it’s a family of two, or twenty, maybe even a hundred.
Maybe even a single person with his or her pet that they share their life.
We all hopefully have some sort of family!
A family by blood, marriage, or adoption.
Maybe a family in an orphanage, or Senior living.
Family with the homeless (God bless their souls).
The work family, the blessings of a Church Family.
Military families that protect our country
(By the way…..Thank you All for Your Gift of Service),
Whatever your definition of family is to you…..
I pray you simply cherish it!!!!!!