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The Family Tree

June 29, 2018

 

Family.  This word has always meant love, safety and a sense of belonging and comfort.  It is one of my core values and I am continually thankful for my heritage.

 

I am most often focused on my tribe of 4 kids, then my sisters, brother, mom and close nieces and nephews. We are intentional to create opportunities to relate to one another with honesty and care.  I feel proud of us.

 

A few weeks ago, I traveled back home to NM for a memorial service for the one remaining uncle in my family tree.  He was closest to my dad, who passed away in 2007.  The gathering was a beautiful time of celebration of his life, accomplishments, values and faith. Many memories were shared through tears, laughter and love.

 

I listened with a feeling of deep connection to the outer branches of our family tree.  I felt humbled and sorry that my inner tribe at home in Austin did not really know and never met some of these family members.  I sent photos to my kids and the response was: “I don’t know most of them…”

 

These cousins and aunts were an integral part of my childhood.  I sensed all of us were sharing this slight feeling of yearning for more connection as we talked and talked, laughed, sang  and shared a meal.  I was made aware of the unique gifts of one cousin and made a commitment to visit her gallery.  Several cousins are traveling to Austin and we made plans to see each other.  

 

My three main lessons through this:

1. Our family tree is full of love and faith…this is a rare and beautiful gift.

 

2. Time is short. There are no more uncles. 4 aunts. My siblings and I are          becoming the older generation. 

 

3. Nourish the roots of our family tree….connect, pass down stories and live a legacy.

 

My question: How can I creatively connect with my extended tribe on a regular basis?

 

 

To all who mourn in Israel, he will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair. In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks that the Lord has planted for his own glory.                                Isaiah 61:3

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