As the first day of the new year winds down, all I have to say is "Thank God the holidays are over." And more because of the food, food, food, and not so much for the craziness. The reality is that this year, me and my sisters agreed to start our own traditions, now that we are grown, and have made a huge effort towards NOT feeling obligated to see relatives or make plans for things we don't want to do. Instead, we just really spent time with each other, and only if we felt up to it. And frankly, it was great.
See, after my dad died and my mom moved to AZ, there was really no one there to be the "glue," you know, that person that helps keep the connections between you and the cousins, aunts, and uncles. Making things even weirder on our end was that, when my mom left, we really kind of lost contact with most of our relatives on her side (though some re-appeared with my dad being sick) and then they kind of shunned us during the estate fiasco. Whatever. Moreover, most of the cousins were also getting older, getting married, and getting pregnant, so they started doing their own thing, leaving us to kind of just hang with each other (which was cool, because we really love each other's company more than anyone else's anyway - our cousin's always called us "snobs," and maybe we are - who cares).
So this year it was just us. Us and our own families. Honestly, it's a weird shift, because it really makes you come face-to-face with aging. Not that I am geriatric, but to even say that phrase "our families," that my sister's would have families of their own, rather than me be their family. I mean, I still am, but it's different. They are actually adults, and have adults lives to prove it. Moreover, now that they are adults, I have to stop believing that I can tell them how to live their lives, being the wiser older sister that I am. That they make their own decisions and plans without my input is a tough cookie to swallow (mmm...cookies). Sometimes I regret that we became so close so late, because I fear we missed out on time to just be us, before they found significant others to be their "us."
And now, my point: Last night we were talking about resolutions, and to be honest, I am already living the life that I usually make resolutions about. I quit smoking permanently two years ago, stopped my eating disordered behavior, am physically fit and set regular fitness goals, and am working on conquering the IM in April. So I guess this year, I will work on enjoying "our" families, in whatever form they come in, and whomever they include. I will work on letting my sisters and brother live their lives, not as I see fit, but how they see fit. I will work on selectively distributing my opinion on matters that really, really matter while shutting my trap on those that really, really don't. Andmostly, I will work on just letting go of the things I can't control, and "having the courage to change the things I can."
Peace in the new year.