I think I have mentioned once or twice about being an open book…if not well I am, so bare with me. This year was the first time in about 12 years that I went home to Michigan for Christmas. I was home for few days when I was pregnant with the twins but somehow going home this time of year is always exciting, nerve-racking, and overwhelmingly sad. I come from a large blended and beautiful family so that means there are a lot of people to see. Mix five kids with freezing weather and Im pretty much sick just thinking about getting in and out of the car. In the end we generally make the rounds with little drama (notice I said little).
I think one of the hardest parts for me is going to a place that I lived for 18 years with my parents and five siblings, where I made all of my childhood memories, a place that really shaped who I am as a person (good or bad) but having to do it all soo differently. My brothers have families of their own, people they have to see, places they have to go. Then there are the people that aren’t there because they couldn’t make it…its just not ever what you remember. Our childhood traditions are no longer and we are not each others priorities.
When I go home I still have this need for things to be just like they were when I was little. We made our rounds as a family on Christmas Eve, my parents stayed up until wee hours of the morning wrapping the gifts they bought for us, and us kids all went to bed with the worst/best excitement in our stomach we couldn’t even take it. We woke up at 3am to open gifts and our parents never once told us it was too early. The sight of the family room is forever burned in my mind. Presents from wall to wall and what seemed like floor to ceiling at the time. It was our “thing” it was what we did for the 16 years my parents and family were still together. These were the best memories ever, and as a kid you think will happen every year until you are 100. But divorce or no divorce they don’t last forever…that’s kind of my point. We all grew up and have lives of our own. Am I the only person who is happy to grow up and have my own family but so sad to leave the family and security of that family I had when I was young? I guess change makes me super uncomfortable and when I go home it brings it all to the forefront. All of our lives have changed, our relationships with each other have changed, our priorities have changed, and we all need each other a little less. We all became adults, adults with opinions, different points of views, and rules. No longer do I throw up my fists to the crowd and side with my brother because he’s all I know to be the truth. No longer do I stay up later than I am allowed to with my sisters spying on my parents movies they are watching. I now take my own stand, fight my own battles, and follow my own family in their journey to make our memories. I guess in the end it’s all just a cycle. A cycles of good, bad, sacred, scary, beautiful and cherished memories. Time to move forward and make my own.
Which is just what we did!! We explored Michigan together, we laughed together, we had firsts together, and we even mended old wounds together.
I’m learning that now I can make new memories and traditions with my kids and husband and also my siblings and parents. These can be the new memories that I look back on and that warm my heart and these can be the new traditions that last as longs as we want them too.
Heres to growing up and making new memories this year and next!! Happy New Year!!!
My brother Josh and his family My elementary school My first home
The next few cuz you can’t decide and you like the funny ones….
All the cousins…one little one missing but growing safely in my sisters tummy. ❤️ My godfather “Papa pronounced Pupu”. 96 and the most giving loving man you will ever meet.