52 Weeks of Gratitude: Week 3

3. Family

Or should I just call it “52 Posts of Gratitude: Whenever Katy sits on her ass for more than 3 seconds and decides to make time to write”. Yeah, that sounds more accurate. What can I say,  breathing and sleeping barely has a priority anymore, but the busy life chose me so what can I do? At least I get to take the time this morning to have a slow(ish) solo brunch and take the time to write, which is all that I’ve really wanted to do lately. Ooh, and the post is about family, which I could go on about forever really, and it’s fitting because it’s my momma’s birthday today and they’re all coming to see me for dinner.

So my family is actually the greatest thing in the world. I’m not kidding when I say that I have been the luckiest person on the planet by having them. If you would’ve asked me like 3 years ago, I probably wouldn’t have said that, which my dad loves to point out, but whatever. I was almost as busy as I am now, and spent about no time at all at home, which was dumb, but, let’s be real, it was high school. Nary do you find a high schooler who would choose to spend a friday night watching TV with their parents instead of taking on the town with their friends. And by “taking on the town”, I obviously mean pigging out on simple carbs and playing charades in my friend’s basement. Nowadays, I love hanging out with my parents, and half the time, I would rather go to Dick’s bar with them on a Friday than hit those carbs hard in the Bauer basement. Or, at the very least, join in on some late night Settlers with friends after some beers and a plate of nachos with the rents. They are my biggest and greatest supporters. Without them, I don’t even know. I’ve had so many crazy amazing opportunities and experiences because they believed in me and gave me the means and confidence to go after exactly what I want in life. Sidenote, I am currently eating a blueberry buckwheat pancake because obviously i’m 80, and I’m going to get syrup all over this damn keyboard. Please send help. Anyways, I guess I’ll go into the intricacies of some of the key members of my family and why I’m grateful for them, partly because I love talking about them, and partly because I love avoiding my other responsibilities.

First, there’s my brother. He’s only 13 months younger than me, but really he’s 18 going on 13 most of the time. That’s cute sometimes because his innocence is refreshing, but a lot of the time I get majorly irritated. That’s what brothers are for, though! As far as siblings go, i’m super lucky! Over the years, him and I became super tight. He’s the sweetest guy in the world, and I love him to death. We hang out in the same crowd a lot of the time, and he’s even dating one of my close friends. That was weirdish at first, but hey, who wouldn’t kind of enjoy the prospect of having a friend as a sibling in law? I don’t know what I would do without him. We get at each others’ throats because we are about as opposite as you can get, but we’re partners in crime when we wanna be, and that’s all that really matters. He is so caring, and was one of my rocks during my super hard transition during last semester. He’s the best shoulder to cry on, and he’s grown up a ton in the last year. I was even with him the first time he got drunk (proud sister over here), and it was the greatest. It’s super awesome having a live in best friend, so let’s have a round of applause for my mom going through two pregnancies right in a row!

My dad and I are such a weird yet bad ass combo, and I think it’s because we have a lot of similar strong personality traits. Sometimes, when you’re super similar to someone, it’s awesome, but it’s truly Hell when you’re at odds. My dad passed on his stubbornness and hardheadedness to me, so when we fight, it’s like a waiting game to see who will admit defeat first. That got me into some shit when I was younger ( I was/am the dictionary definition of a smartass), but we’ve mostly outgrown it. My dad also passed on his fierce compassion and desire to help people on to me, and I’d say that’s one of the biggest parts of my identity, so thanks Pops! We work at the same place ( a day program for youth and a adults with disabilities), and if he had not gotten me to start volunteering there at such a young age, my life would be drastically different. No one else understands my passion for it like he does, and he is my role model for how I work.  I love seeing how he talks about work because you can see how much he loves it, which is how I hope I am later in life. He showed me my passion and calling to be a Special Education teacher, and if that’s not a legacy that should make him proud, I don’t know what is.

My mom is my absolute best friend. She is my favorite person in this world, my biggest supporter, my inspiration, my driving force. She picks me up when I’m down, helps me believe in myself, and is my most important confidant. I seriously call her all the damn time, and it’s great. I’m pretty sure anyone who hears our conversations is either amused or confused because I seriously call her for the dumbest things, like getting a major deal at Target. I take my bargaining way too seriously, and am always so proud that I have to tell her about them. That should be pathetic, but have you saved $20 simply using your cartwheel app? I think not. Anyways, I can’t even say enough or even find the right words to explain what she means to me. Having a mother as a best friend is the dream, and she shows me that that’s my greatest wish for me and my future child. We are scary similar, too. I love that I can look at myself and witness the strength that she’s instilled and passed on to me. She is an incredible leader and a super strong woman, which I like to think that I have become too over the years. She has shown me what it means to go after what you want, and I am eternally grateful for that.

I could go so far into the other people in my family, like my uncle who is the sweetest man in the world, or my grandma who is one of my best friends, too, but for the sake of length and time, i’ll go into that another time. Basically, family is the best thing we have, and the more we take the time to acknowledge and revel in that, the better. My life is so much more rich and full since I’ve come to fully appreciate how incredibly lucky I am to have these people in my life, and it felt great to do a little bragging about that one here. To leave off, here’s a lil cheesy ass quote about family because sentimentality.

“The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other’s life”-Richard Bach

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