Being Family, Part of a Family, and Sharing Blood

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There is nothing like a death in the family to remind you what family means to you. It brings to mind whether or not a person is family, part of the family, or just sharing blood.
I see family as a beautifully knitted blanket. Knit one, purl one, drop a few, forever tightening and adding to the length and strength of the bond. A protection and a place in which to hide when the world sucks.

Being family is an intricate weaving of small experiences of every person. Being 'part' of a family is how we take that weaving, knit and expand over our experiences with the experiences of another and make that small square into a covering which enfolds and protects our hurts and joys. Sharing blood is an existence and an acknowledgement to being related. You are neither here nor there. Easily remembered and just as easily forgotten.

Being family is the bit where outsiders can look in, see the resemblance and say, "oh, you're so and so's sister/brother.
 Being part of a family is when you can look across an aisle over what will be the final resting place of a sibling, into the teary eyes of another sibling and be able to smile because you know in your heart everything will be okay.
Sharing blood is when another sibling chooses to walk pass and ignore you at one of the worst and most crucial times in all of your lives. It marks a spot. Telling you this is where you will stay or choose to move forward with change.

Being part of a family is more than that drop of DNA that binds you for eternity. It has nothing to do with the familiarity in looks or traits. Being part of a family is where, whether you're blood related or brought into the family through the heart of are just family. You just automatically 'belong' in the family. Your spot has been forever weaved into our world and you will never be let loose. It is where that X in ex-sisterlaw marks the spot where that person entered your heart and became a permanent fixture. Nothing will tear her out.

Being part of a family is a quick dash across the city to make an interception in a parking lot just so you can spend a few minutes with family as they drive through your town. Being family is remembering birthdays. Being part of a family is throwing impromptu get togethers and having the best time of your life. Sharing blood is having and keeping an attitude because you didn't receive an 'invitation'. Sharing blood is when you take every tiny imagined slight and turn it into a cutthroat experience. An experience which will last for generations because you weave that into the lives of your children and it becomes your legacy. Sharing blood is when you make everyone else just a little bit miserable. Its when you take a beautiful covering and taint it.

There is a remedy for everything. Taints can be removed, the strings which pull the family together can be tightened and that space will be filled.

I don't share blood with my family and I don't play at 'being' family. You're either going to be a 'part' of my family or you'll have to step off. That's it and all. Life is too short for games and I never play games.


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