Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Then There's the Family That You Choose

It's getting toward the end of the year and I feel like as we get closer to 2014 I need to talk about the things and people that made huge differences in my life this year.  After last weeks  post about the non-tangible gifts that I have received from my family I thought that I would take the opportunity today to talk about the people who have become new additions to my family. 

New additions typically means "oh, someone had a baby".  Nope. Not this time.  This time the new additions are the people who have become such good friends that it's like they are family.  It's the family that you choose.  I still consider my first ex-husband and his family to be my family.  I have a couple of friends, Lindsay and Mi'Cole, that I think of as family.  They may as well be.  This year I lost an entire family, that mess was obviously never "family" to begin with.  But what I gained makes up for that loss in spades.   

It's kinda funny how fast Veronica became like family.  I'm sure I would have made it through these past six months without her but I wouldn't have had nearly as much fun.  Veronica is my voice of reason. She is the first person to tell me to CTFD.  Veronica is one of the most honest people I know and she has taught me the art of sharing my feelings and not holding crap in.  This blog can be attributed to Veronica as can my new found status as a cat woman.  She get's my crazy, not very many people do. I get her crazy too.  We need each other.  She is definitely family that I got to choose.  Or  maybe I didn't... we chose each other.  

I also feel like I gained family in Josh's mom and dad, Chris and Steve.  The thing is they have always been kinda like family.  When you have known someone since you were 13 it's pretty much inevitable.  I feel like I have a second set of parents.  I get a second mom who looks out for me and a second protective dad. The level of support that I have received from them this year is awesome.  And I feel like that support would have been given regardless of if I was dating their son or not.  That's the biggest thing I think, support being given because someone genuinely likes and cares about you, and not because they are obligated to. 

Then there is Josh.  Another person who has kinda always been like family.  One that you don't see and don't talk to for years but when you do nothing has changed and the feelings you had before are still there. Everything could go to hell in a hand basket tomorrow and I would still consider him family for the gifts he has given me this year. He has helped me realize a lot about myself, the most important is that I am who I am, and someone who loves me is going to love that person. There is no reason to try and be anyone else.  The knowledge that you should be accepted exactly how you are is a gift that can never be matched, repaid or taken away. It certainly isn't a something that I will ever forget.  

You expect the people who share your DNA to love you. They don't have a choice. The people who don't share your DNA, the one's who choose to love and support you, even though they don't have to, those are the one's that become family. The ability to choose is a powerful thing. And the people that choose you, and that you choose, help you become more powerful.  Just like the support of a family is supposed to. 

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