We all do it. We get so caught up with our busy, busy lives and fast-paced lifestyles that we barely see our relatives unless they live with us. In fact, far too many of us lose touch with relatives that aren’t close by. National Visit Your Relatives Day reminds us to stop for a moment, take time out and call or visit those relatives we care about and haven’t seen for a while. Life really is too short not to make time for family and that goes for extended family too.
Seeing a special aunt, uncle or cousin brings back memories, usually of childhood when get-togethers seemed to be more common. Be grateful for your relatives, as few or as many as you have. There’s a unique thread that’s woven through all families that ties us together. Who among us doesn’t have a favorite relative who acts as a stalwart support, helping us get through tough times and celebrating with us when we have successes? We need our families and they need us.
Even if it’s only by phone, keep the connection. A favorite, 90-year-old uncle can answer questions you may have about your mother if she’s passed. Your cousin and you can dissect family dynamics. It’s quite likely you had holiday diners together when you were younger and no one can erase those memories. Like the time your aunt put a Brussel sprout on top of your cousin’s piece of pumpkin pie because he refused to eat them? We all have funny memories.
And yes, some of course are sad. That’s part of life. But if you regularly keep your arm extended to your entire family, you can share your melancholy with people who really, truly understand what you feel and will walk down memory lane with you.
Think about it for a second. What would life be like without your grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and/or nephews? Pretty dull, heh? Take some time right now and pick up the phone. Better yet, get in your car and go for a visit!