Families are Complicated and Exhausting!
No, I have not died. Thank you for asking. I have just been so busy with family-related things, and working on the business side of my music, that I have not found the time to write. And for me to not have the time to write, well, it really means I have not had the time for me… to think… reflect… ponder… question… comment… digest… absorb… life.
It is that time of the year when family members are graduating, having babies, celebrating birthdays, getting married, moving, travelling, visiting, and planning more get-togethers. We have had our share of trips and out-of-town family visits… and it is as exhausting, as it is exhilarating.
Families have gotten, quite simply, more complicated. Grandparents, children and grandchildren live on opposite corners of the country or the world, making it ever more difficult to be there for everyone’s big and little moments.
Families have broken apart and forged into new entities that include a blending of children, step-children, parents, step-parents, exes, new wives, new husbands, significant others, partners, in-laws, former in-laws, the in-laws of your in-laws, friends-who-are-like-family, and, well, I get exhausted just thinking about it.
All these new entities in the families bring along new protocols, awkward protocols, especially when certain exes or in-laws don’t get along; or when there are competing graduations or events in too-far-apart-to-attend-all places; or when you have to decide with which family faction to share the holidays or vacations.
And, for some reason, all the birthdays in a family clump together in just a few select months, which makes them easier to remember, but there are always a few stragglers who have a month or a season all to themselves and no matter how hard you try to remember, those individuals will often end up with the belated birthday card and you end up feeling bad. (And you were so close to a perfect record!)
As preferable and perhaps less stressful as it is to have family visit you, you cannot help but worry or obsess about the house and yard being clean and comfortable, providing room and board if you can, and feeling guilty if you cannot.
During these family visits, playing the perfect host or hostess, gourmet chef, bed-n-breakfast innkeeper, tourist guide, recreation director, chauffeur, family drama mediator or confidant, perfect gift buyer, travel agent, event planner, along with an endless number of other supporting roles is exhausting… and impossible to do if you plan to keep your normal life going as well.
(I don’t know, but the image of those Chinese acrobats that bend-over-backwards while twirling a dozen plates on sticks comes to mind. Although, I am sure that has to be easier, I have to admit, nothing is better than spending time with your family.)
And looking at my calendar, the next three months don’t look any easier… or better!
(Okay, I am taking a deep breath and diving back in… wish me luck!)
Martie Hevia (c) 2010 – All Rights Reserved