Have you ever heard someone say to you, “We were poor, but I never knew it.”? That is what happened to me, as we lived in a small town, didn’t have much money, and my dad worked 3 jobs to just make ends meet. But, we were rich in so many other ways.
Most of my family lived in this small town. And we all walked to see one another. Some of us were living on the same street, some were up the street and around the corner, some were near the school that we attended. And we all walked to school, about a mile or so, no buses, no rides, but a group of us hanging out and talking, spending time together walking to school. It was definitely a good thing.
And I was surrounded by love. Now, don’t get me wrong, my parents were not the happiest of couples, and had a lot of issues. My mother was not a happy person. But my grandmother was great, and she and I spent a lot of time together in those important early years. She taught me how to sew (doll clothes), make cookies (and sample the batter), and was a guiding light for me, just glowing with love. And she was a great hugger.
Funny when you think back on your childhood, and try to pick out those happier moments. My grandmother’s hugs win every time. And the focused attention that I received from her was so important in my early years. I remember that my mother wasn’t around much and when she was, she suffered from migraines and would be in her bedroom. And she and I didn’t have much of a relationship. So, I spent almost more time at my grandmother’s than at home in those years.
And more love – every Sunday when I was growing up, we spent family time together. We alternated between going to my maternal grandparents’ house with my paternal grandparents’ house. And all of us cousins spent a lot of quality time together.
So, you see, although I wasn’t getting what I needed from my mother, it almost didn’t matter, because I was surrounded by family all the time. It gives you a great sense of security when you have that.
And I get concerned today, when I don’t see that happening for our young people. Many times, their ‘guiding lights’ are their teachers and their babysitters. Most parents today need to both work in order to survive. So, the sense of family and that caring, supportive unit is missing in a lot of families. So, many of our youth today don’t have that sense of love and security that I was luck enough to grow up with.
How can you develop a good sense of self when you don’t have that? The family unit is becoming scarce, and that will only lead to…and already has led to… troubled youth. Something to think about.
Not in our house today. We are all living together, as I am lucky enough to be living with my daughter, son-in-law and grandchildren. And we have a lot of love and support for one another. And I see my grandchildren developing a good sense of self. They will be survivors because of that. They have a great mother and father. And I’m a part of their growing up, as their grandmother, like my own grandmother.
Remember, family is the most important thing in your life. Even if you have some toxic members in your family, they still need your love…and forgiveness. More on this in my next blog.
Thank you for reading another true story from my life. For more information on me, see my About Me Page.