Aunties and Uncles

24 Apr

I only have one biological sibling. Much to my disappointment, its not an older brother. Not that I don’t love my younger brother, but I grew up always wanting an older brother. Neither here nor there though. :) My husband has an older sister and a younger brother. I also have a sister-in-law. So my children have “slim pickins” when it comes to aunties and uncles…and by that I mean that neither my husband or I came from huge immediate families with loads of kids, which would in turn mean lots of aunties and uncles and lots of cousins.  My brothers and sisters are cherished family members and I adore them so much. But after I married my husband and the reality that I would eventually be moving away from my family set it, I had a mini melt down. How could my kids possibly grow up happy, healthy and well rounded without their family being around? When I was younger, I used to love getting together with all my aunts, uncles and cousins. I always wanted that for my kids. But the few siblings that my husband and I have, coupled with the fact that we now live thousands and thousands of miles away from our closest family members makes it really difficult.

I vaguely remember having a conversation with my mother-in-law shortly after or around the time that my husband deployed back in 2008 about how your military friends become more like family. You move around every three years or so, leaving your previous life in the dust to basically start over. You meet new people, make new friends and have a “new” life. It doesn’t make it any easier to leave your friends or family behind.

 

I’ve always considered my kids lucky. We may not have a ton of money. We can’t go buy new cars willy-nilly. We can’t buy our kids everything under the sun that they could ever want. We aren’t dressed in designer clothes. But that’s all okay. We get by and give our kids the best that we possibly can. And I’m so thankful for that. And, in moving around and meeting different people, my kids have people who they will always be able to consider aunties and uncles. My bestie and her husband are like an aunt and uncle to my kids. They always will be. Even though it’s a very “weird” family dynamic (the older two children of my best friend are my oldest daughters half brother and half sister), she has been a rock through so many things for me and a constant in my older daughters life. I also consider our old neighbors (the good ones, not the ones that would keep me up until 2am when Brad was in the Maldives) to be an aunt and uncle to our kids. We have great friends here on the island, a few of whom we’ve been able to call in a pinch. We have friends who don’t have kids, but treat our kids like their own.

So my kids may not have a ton of Aunts and Uncles like I did growing up. We may not be able to have huge family get togethers all the time. But my kids are so, so lucky to have the “aunties and uncles” that they have. One day, I would absolutely love for all our families and all our “families” to get together, though I know that the event of that is pretty unlikely, but one can hope.

All I know is that my kids are SO lucky to have so many people who truly care about them who aren’t blood relatives. And I would like to think that these people will continue to be our friends and aunties and uncles to our kids for years and years to come.

So thank you…thank you to my brothers and my sisters for being real aunties and uncles to my kiddos. And thank you to all our friends who are close enough to be family…who are “aunties” and “uncles” and for being so important to our family and such great influences in our kids’ lives. They are better people for having amazing people like you around.

*end sappy post*

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