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I believe we have two families.  The first, we are born with.  Or adopted into, if you like.  This family is one we can’t escape, and one who forms...

Family redefined

March 5, 2015

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Remembering ... and looking forward

March 1, 2018

I don’t know if I (we?) feel it more because we are overseas and away from the comfort of family, if I have more time to reflect and be introspective (I spend a LOT of time sitting in traffic…), or if it really just bites to lose family – extended or immediate, biological or de facto – or, (most likely) a combination of the three, but when we lose a loved one, it hits close to home and thoroughly sends me in a tail-spin. 

 

My uncle passed away recently.  It’s not as though we were close, though I have tremendously fond memories of him and his family, and the kindness that they have extended to me and mine.  It isn’t as though I thought of him every day, nor spent huge amounts of time with him.  Perhaps I am dwelling on this because my dad’s passing is so recent, and perhaps just because losing a family member pushes me to think about those still living, and what I can do to better the connection I have with each of them.  I don’t know.  Suffice it to say, I am preoccupied with thoughts of family, and connections and what we can do to make these connections stronger.  In this day and age of connectivity (internet/etc), we can't use distance as much as an excuse as we once could.  In addition, I’m thinking about what impact I have made, what I might be remembered for, and by whom.  (Honestly, it bears repeating, I spend a LOT of time in traffic.)

 

So I am asking myself:

How am I making an effort to stay connected?  And with whom?  Am I making myself available to the people I hold most dear and important?  Am I using my time wisely to reach out, and also to reach in?

 

I wish in lieu of regret after losing someone, we would instead do our best to connect BEFORE the loss happens.  I keep feeling this way about my immediate family, and my relationship with each of them.  I keep feeling this way about my extended village of friends.  What can I do to reach out more?  What can I do to make a more positive impact on others?  Not to be morbid, when the time comes to pass, but what do I want to be remembered for?  I always feel like the best one can hope for is to pass away having a sense of happiness, contentment and connection. 

 

So I’m asking myself:

 Am I fostering positive change?  And I leaving this place better than I found it?  Am I building – literally and proverbially – instead of destroying?  We move often, recreating our community each time.  Am I contributing positively to each new space and place?  Do I contribute positivity?  When I see something I do not necessarily agree with, do I try to foster positive change?  Am I respectful in my differences?  Am I accepting of others, and help them through their trouble spots?  Am I using the tools I have to spread positivity?  Is this all too Pollyanna-ish? 

 

I don’t know, it isn’t as though I want to start writing my epitaph, but this has given me a moment to pause and reflect.   This is as good a time as any, right?  And better now than wait until who knows what happens.  Making good things happen, and searching for the positive is a lot more productive than dwelling on what isn’t or couldn’t be, methinks.



https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/florida-shooting-teens-gun-control_us_5a85ea3be4b004fc3190306e

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