Saturday, June 26, 2010

Extended Family

It's paraphrase the very wise words of one former girlfriend... "to put on my big boy boots" for today...I am attending a family event.

Attending is probably not the best word to describe what I will be doing later on today...chauffeuring and observing are more like it. In each family everyone has their roles. In my family of origin, my brother's role is to help my father, my sister's is to be best friend to my mother, and mine is to deliver my children to family events, find a quiet corner, observe, and do my best to keep my mouth shut.

As someone with more than his fair share of experience with complicated relationships...I can safely say that my relationship with my family of But again, whose isn't? The tricky part, however, is to isolate my kids from the complexity of my own relationship with my family.

Extended family brings a richness and fullness to a kid's family life. When I was growing up I enjoyed my own cousins, aunts, uncles, and grandparents and frankly cannot imagine my childhood without them. I am sure that my own parents had to put aside their own familial issues so that the three of us could have a relationship with the extended family. And to their credit, they put aside whatever issues they may have had to make this possible. am putting on my big boy boots, driving my kids to Rhode Island, and hope that somewhere in my brother's house there is a quiet corner from where I can watch my kids enjoy their cousins, aunts, uncles, and their grandparents. Hopefully I will be able to keep my mouth shut.

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