Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Families Made Of Love

"The family is one of nature's masterpieces." -George Santayana

Yes, the last 50 years have seen a huge rise in divorce with the U.S. having the highest of any industrialized nation. Cohabitation rather than marriage, "blended" families of both gay and heterosexual design, and children born out of wedlock are common these days.

But regardless of what the family looks like today, how you live and nuture each other within the confines of that matter greatly. We each have defined roles that determine the structure of each family. The parents, the children and the love that exists within are the things that make a family.

We may not have as many "traditional" families as once there were, but families can still exist and do in many of the different forms. As long as there is love, respect and nuturing within those walls, the family will continue to exist.

As I returned from visiting my siblings and father, it has made me think about these words. We grew up in a traditional family and around non-traditional families. My wife and children make up the strings of a blended family that bind together a family put together by a marriage after divorce. We are a family many would consider oddly formed, but it is solid and filled with love.

Both types of family units have taught me quite a bit about life, about raising children, and about the love that binds us together. With love we can and do overcome the squabbles, the hurt feelings, and any other obstacles that get in the way. It is love that fills the voids and makes a family what it is.

So as you gather with your own family, make love the greatest part of your gathering. Hug each other. Say "I love you" to each other. Love the moments no matter what type of family you have.

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