Wednesday, November 18, 2015


Time is finite.  We can’t make more of it no matter how hard we try.  We have a set number of hours and minutes in one day.  What we do with them, how we allocate them,   and how we fill them are up to us.  We can say we wish we had more time, or that there are just not enough hours in the day but how many times does an hour simply slip by while searching Pinterest or getting caught up in political drama on Facebook or by watching someone else’s life on YouTube.

One thing that has always been important to me is family.  If we have this amazing opportunity to be home, not confined to a schedule, and did not take time to visit with family and bond with younger cousins and visit with Aunts and Uncles, then I would think that was a tragedy.

The concept of family has been on my mind lately.  How family has changed from eras of the past where the nucleus did not break apart and scatter, how the elders were cared for at home and families cohabited for life.  Now we view it is lazy, unmotivated, and irresponsible for a person in their 20s to live at home even if their “rent” may be helping aging parents pay increasing taxes and utilities and provide maintenance to the home that may someday be passed down to them.  The concept of family home is gone.  When you send kids away at 18 to college with the expectation that they will not come back, that does not foster a strong home environment.  It is almost part of our American culture to leave home.  The early immigrants left home for unknown shores.  The pioneers left home for the west.  Independence, liberty, freedom are our founding concepts as a country, but also as a country made up of what were once very strong individuals.  I also wonder lately why some members of a family are friends and some truly dislike one another.  I reflect on how the actions of the adults create this toxicity.  And yet, we are family, joined by blood, laughter, and tears.  

I am so fortunate to have family close by, at least close enough for planned visits.  This month we watched a Patriot’s game with my cousin’s family in Massachusetts.  We rushed up right after church arriving just a few minutes after kick off.  We spend the day together eating, playing, laughing, and enjoying our time together.

This past weekend our two nieces and a boyfriend came to visit for the weekend.  I love that our home has become their getaway place; their break from school, homework, and jobs.  We eat lots of food, play games, watch movies, and talk.  Lots of talking.  When they are here my heart is full.  When they leave, we start to look forward to when they will return.

Family is a funny thing.  It can make us laugh and it can make us cry.  It can heal us and it can hurt us.  It can bring us joy or it can bring us pain.  I hope my girls do their best to choose the positive in family and work their way through the rest.

What can you do to promote world peace? Go home and love your family.

-Mother Theresa


Theresa B said...

What a lovely post! I could not agree more! And actually I think you were inside my head the last couple of weeks! Family has always been really important to me and having family over for everything from holidays and birthdays or just for brunch or for silly contests that I made up or just for dinner has always been something that we have done. It's changed in the last few years since my Uncle passed and since my brother and sister in law are just not that into it and are busy with their careers (even on weekends), but we are hosting both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day this year because my mom is "burned out" she says from it, but I am seeing in my girls how much they love having family over (even if I am a little irritated with said family) and how much they enjoy being with family and I am proud of that. I am proud that Jason and I made being with family a priority for the girls and that it's become something they look forward to. I wish other members of my family would be into Sunday dinner, and I hope that my girls live close enough when they are grown that I can host weekly or at least bi-monthly Sunday dinners.

I was talking to someone the other day who has three children in their twenties who are all still living at home, working full time jobs, but paying down debt and saving. I hope that is what my girls do. We have never told them they have to be out at 18 or 22, this is their home and they are welcome here as long as they want. In fact I think it is smart to live at home in your twenties and save for a condo or house or grad school... I hope that I have cultivated the kind of relationship with my girls where they will want to stay here until they are financially and emotionally prepared to be on their own.

LJS said...

My parents never pushed me out. My mom lived at home until she married and I did the same. Greg and I lived with my parents twice, once for 6 months while we were engaged to save for our wedding and again right before we bought our house. My mom loved having us. I think it was harder for me than it was for her! I never quite understood the parenting attitude 18 and out but I guess I don't have to, that's just not me.

I hope you enjoy your holidays and by taking over this year, you can make them what you want it to be. We can't make our family into what we want it to be, but we can try to create an experience that we can all enjoy.

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