Thursday, October 20, 2011

My New Family

As I'm sure you other ACOD's can attest, divorce doesn't just alter your family, it completely changes it from the inside out. Sometimes in a painful, heart-wrenching way.

In my case, divorce has given me a new family. Yes, they're the same people who have been there all along. But it's a new family in that we have new ways (or sometimes lack thereof) of communicating with one another. For example, I only get to see several members of my family at a time. The five of us have not been in the same room together in a long time. I've had to get used to running around to several different places just so I can make time to see all of the members of my family. I've had to get used to having lot's of one-on-one time with each member of my family. It makes me sad at times, but I have to admit that the challenge of it all are what makes my relationships with each individual much richer.

I never used to work at making time for my family. I took it for granted that we all would be together, whether it be around the dinner table, at Christmas or just chilling and watching a movie. That died along with my parents' marriage. Now I have to work to get to know everyone as individuals. Sounds crazy, doesn't it? I should already know each member of my family, right? All I can tell you is that it's different when a family is broken. You have to get to know everyone as they are in this new situation. Personalities can be altered and opinions/viewpoints can change.

It's been a challenge, but I can say that the effort I put forth (and the heartbreak I sometimes have over not being able to see everyone all at once) shows how much my family means to me. Despite everything that's happened, it's still worth it to see them. I still need a mother, father, sister and brother. My kids deserve to have grandparents, aunts and uncles who play a role in their lives.

I've learned that life situations or events don't make up a family -- people make a family. Messed up, wholly imperfect people. But still people. People I love and need in my life. Because whether I like it or not, they've impacted my life. And I wouldn't be me without them.

My siblings and I saying good-bye to our beloved dog Nike
(couldn't have done it without them)

My parents and me on my wedding day

5 comments:

Serenity said...

After 3 years, we all are getting used to more seperate relationships. It takes alot of time and alot of acceptance to allow that to be o.k. if you thought you had a secure, happy family in the past, as I did. It is possible to move forward, valuing each person, and relationship , but handling each one differently, as is necessary. I hope this becomes easier for all of us ACOD's as time goes on.

paige said...

found your blog looking through resources for adult children of divorce... i'm afraid to blog as openly (about divorce) as you have, but appreciate what you've created.. :)

HB said...

I would love to hear how you survived Thanksgiving. Just stumbled onto your blog. The week leading up to Thanksgiving was a very rough one for me, even though my parents have been divorced for 5 1/2 years after a 30 year marriage.

C said...

I've so appreciated reading your posts and updates, and seeing the ways you're growing and changing. I know it's been an incredibly hard period, but you are coming through it so strongly and so well. Your honesty and openness have been so encouraging.

MVroom said...

Thank you all for your wonderful comments and my apologies for not responding sooner! I'm posting about the holidays today and hope that it will be helpful to you, HB.

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