This past weekend, my family had a few birthdays to celebrate. There are just certain months each year where I’m overpowered by birthdays, and other months with none. One of my family members is two days shy of his brother’s birthday. We decided that in order to celebrate the January birthdays we go out to dinner. However, when it came time to meet I was left with just one family member. I can’t remember the last time I had family say yes and then back out at the last minute. The unfortunate part of it is that it’s the same family member that does it. For birthdays and even holidays, he always decides last minute not to attend. I wonder how many other people go through this in their families, or is it just mine?
When did it become acceptable to become so distant? This is a question that I’m starting to ask myself. With friends, as much as it hurts, it happens. Although with family, it’s a different story. These are people that I remember as a child growing up with, relatives that I looked up to. I never imagined that there would be a time in my life that I would have to worry about being alone and without family around. When my grandparents were still with us we didn’t have this problem. I didn’t think about the older generation being the glue that kept our family as a family, but I was wrong. Perhaps it’s hurt from our grandparents no longer being with us. Or maybe our relationships weren’t as close as I thought they were and I made them up in my imagination. All of these ideas may be the causes for my family becoming so distant.
It’s like a puzzle that never gets solved. With just a few miles apart from each other, you would think it would be long distances that would keep families apart. The role of the family is changing just as quickly as our everyday relationships. A grim and dark reality, building a meaningful relationship is slowly becoming less common. We have become so caught up in our own lives. The reason for it is that those are the lives that they are living. We are living in a stressed out society. Pressures are becoming greater and the idea of opening our homes is showing less value. Granted, not every person lives by this thinking, and that’s a good thing. My hope is that as time moves on, what will be meant to be won’t be becoming more distant, but rather to return to the dreams that our childhoods were made of…good old fashioned relationships. The ones where we sat around the table and looked at the family album of pictures and retold stories. The stories that we could think back on, smile, and remember.