Monday, January 27, 2014

Blood is thicker than water...

I was reading an article this morning at work that couldn't feel more relevant to things that are going on with me personally and things that are going on for some people around me.  My older sister keeps talking about people misusing the phrase "blood is thicker than water" and today I finally looked it up and learned the origin of the phrase and it's true meaning.  I always thought it was literally like "family is closer than friends/other people" but as it turns out - that's not what the phrase was intended to mean at all.  The phrase originally went something like "a bond or covenant I’ve made with someone I’ve shed or shared blood with (sometimes literally) is stronger than one I have with someone I’ve shared the womb with."  Basically saying, sometimes the bond you share with your friends, the family you make for yourself, is a bond deeper than the one you share with your real family.  That could not be more true.

This past weekend, Jemayne and Laura brought their daughter, Jada, over to meet Natalie.  It was easily one of my favorite visits to date and thinking about it makes me a little bit weepy.  The thing is, I remember the night Jada was born.  I remember going to visit Laura when Jada was just weeks old and bringing her blankets, toys and clothes for Miss Jada Bean. I remember seeing Jada at three months old when Mayne and Brandon graduated from Lycoming. I remember Jada dancing at our wedding and being the little life of the party.  And now to see Jada holding my little girl is so surreal.  In my opinion those two little girls are like cousins and I can only imagine the trouble they are going to get into together... or the trouble that Jada will probably get Natalie out of!

Mayne, Brandon & Jada (3 months) at Lyco Graduation '09

Mayne & Jada (2.5 years old)

Jada (5) and Natalie (2.5 months)

the boys and their girls :)
how are we old enough to have a picture like this?!

This upcoming weekend, my girlfriends Kerri and Emily are coming to visit Miss Natalie (and I guess us too).  I am so excited for Emily to finally meet Natalie and for Kerri to see just how big she has gotten since Kerri last saw her at just three days new.  I am so excited to see the relationship that will form between Natalie and these two incredible women who have been there for me through thick and thin.  I can only imagine the 2AM phone calls these women will get when Natalie is in high school and she hates me but she needs advice that she just cannot ask her lame mom for.  I am totally realistic about my future relationship with Natalie and am thankful I have fabulous girlfriends to help me out :)

I was recently talking to a woman I know who is having a hard time with her own family.  She was telling me that she felt like her friends are more like family to her than her own blood relatives are.  She told me that her brother told her that he loved her son but couldn't care less about her son's wife. She didn't know how to handle that.  She told her son what was said and the son told his mother that the only reason he even talks to that uncle and those members of his family is because of his wife! I couldn't help but laugh at the irony.  I told her that while I have no doubt the crumbling relationships with her family members hurt her, she has surrounded herself with delightful loving friends who really care about her and that's something pretty wonderful and incredibly special.

Hearing this woman tell me about her family situation and her feelings about her friends only reinforced to me how lucky Brandon and I are to have such great friends.  Don't get me wrong, Brandon and I have both been blessed with big families (that are growing like weeds!) full of crazy, enjoyable and loveable people, but we have also created our own framily (thanks Sprint for that awesome word-mash) and for that I am incredibly grateful. Natalie will have no shortage of playmates, friends, mentors and role models and she will be forever surrounded by love and guidance and there is nothing more heartwarming and rewarding than that.