If you know me at all well, you know that my family has a big influence on my life. I have a relatively small immediate family – mum, dad, sister – but a really BIG extended family (my dad has about 100 FIRST cousins!). Family is important to me. And yet, if you follow me on social media, you’ll also notice that I’m not always kind to family. I complain about them far too often and I think sometimes I forgot what wonderful people I’m related to. This is not to say that my family is perfect – far from it – but I wanted to write this post to be a public celebration of three people I am thankful for in my family 🙂
My Dad: I am thankful to you, Dad, for the way you show respect for the women in your life. I am thankful that there was never anything you told me I couldn’t be. I am thankful that you are honest and patient with me. I am thankful that you let me ‘help’ you in the garden when I was little, and that you taught me how to throw and catch and kick a ball. I am thankful for all the times you came to ballroom dancing exams and church and netball games (none of which you were remotely interested in). I am thankful for the way you help around the house and read and cook and laugh. I am very. very, thankful for your bear hugs!
My Mum: I am thankful to you, Mum, for everything you have given up to look after us. I am thankful for shopping trips and coffee dates and conversations about education. I am thankful for your cooking, and for you washing my clothes for the first 22 years of my life. I am thankful for your creative heart and generous spirit and the ways you model being a Christian woman in difficult circumstances. I am thankful for your smile and for ‘little treats’ and the ways you are helping me become an adult. I am thankful for the way you have worked to become an excellent engineer AND special education teacher. I am very, very thankful for your gentle pats of my back when I am upset!
My Big Sister: I am thankful to you, Sis, for putting up with me, especially during our teenage years. I am thankful for ‘sister dates’ and for every time you picked me up from bible study and church. I am thankful for your wisdom and your joy and your passion to help people. I am thankful that you have helped me to make my own choices. I am thankful for the way you love your God and your husband (in that order). I am thankful for the way you let me sneak into your bed when I was young and scared. I am thankful that you are someone I can tell me dreams and fears to, and I am thankful for the way you challenge me. I am thankful for the way you let me babble on and on and on. I am thankful that when I was sick, you understood what I needed. I am very, very thankful for the way you pray for me!
Of course, I am thankful to ALL my family, for the way they have supported and cared for and loved me over the years. I am thankful that while we’re a crazy bunch, we’re also a loving and joyful and honest bunch. There are problems and issues in any family, and sometimes we rub each other up the wrong way, but I am thankful that I belong to my family.