I have returned (very late Friday night) from an impromptu trip to the beach with some of my cousins.* To sum up the list of characters: my cousin Jo and her husband Todd along with their kids A and Doodle, my cousin Ryan and his wife Terry and their kid Baby Cash, and my cousin Doda. And me of course! I've struggled recently with family drama...as discussed in my last post things with my mom have been weighing on my mind a lot lately and I don't really have the chance to really deal with those feelings. I live with my grandmother (my mom's mom) and any mention of my mother really upsets her, so I try to avoid any mentions at home. I obviously don't want to upset my dad by talking about things a lot. And truthfully I just hate focusing on everything, even if talking it out probably would help me deal with things. Usually I just work around my frustrations and focus negative energy into positive things to distract myself.
ANYWAY, the point is, I had the opportunity to tag along on my cousins' family vacation. It's been roughly six years since I've been to the beach and I've missed the experience. Mostly though I just enjoyed being away from my troubles. I spent a week reading in the sun, playing with the baby cousins, and hanging out with my older cousins. I ate good food and had a few drinks. I played in the ocean and allowed myself to be in awe of the greatness of creation. I watched dolphins swim in the ocean and went to the aquarium. Basically, I lived free for the week. I set down my burdens and relaxed. And it was the best time I've had in such a long time.
I'm truly grateful for my family. I realize I focus on them a lot, both here and on Twitter, but that's because I've committed myself to surrounding myself with people who love me and that I love. Family is a sure fired way to do that. They have seen me at my very worst and have loved me through it all, and the same is true for them. Sometimes they drive me crazy, and I'm sure that I grate on their nerves at time. I don't always fit in...I'm not sporty and I my idea of an outdoor activity is reading in the shade**, but I'm accepted in spite of my oddities. And when things are gross and bad and I need somewhere to hide out, I always have a place...or ten. And there will never be a way for me to express how blessed I am to have this group of people tied to me indefinitely.
*Honestly, I should make a tab just to keep track of my relatives!
**We won't even get into my crazy liberal ideas.