Sunday, October 6, 2013

Friday Night Homecoming Parade and Family Values

Friday night was homecoming for our town, and it is a big deal here.  The middle school band gets to march with the high school band, and when they are all together, there are over 400 kids.  There is a parade and then they get to do the pre-game show.  Colin plays the French Horn so, of course, we went to both.  It is really amazing, and so exciting to see the older kids take the younger kids under their wings to show them all that band has in store for them.  That it will be worth it to stick it out to get to share in the fun. 

As I was waiting for the parade to start, I struck up a conversation with the lady sitting next to me.  I know that everyone is shocked that I started talking to a stranger.  In fact, Ryan talked to me about stranger danger while I was doing it, but she was there all alone and Dave was talking to his parents.  I asked her if she had someone in the parade and she said that her grand daughter was playing the trumpet.  To make a long story short, it turned out that her husband had passed away from a brain tumor the year before.  I have been working on my filter, and even though I desperately wanted to know where her daughter was, I held my tongue. 

After the parade we walked down to get our tickets and she was getting kind of agitated.  Since my filter was worn out from minding my own business, I had to ask if she was okay.  She said that she had seen her daughter and thought about getting a ticket for her but decided against it because she wasn't sure that she would accept it from her.  Apparently she had done something to upset her daughter and she was not talking to her, returning her texts, or even acknowledging that she existed.  I didn't want to get involved because really, what could I do?  I simply said that I was sorry that was happening to her, that I had enjoyed her company and that I hoped she enjoyed the show and that we didn't get rained on, and then moved on. 

Obviously I don't know the situation here, but after talking to this woman for 35 minutes, she seemed pretty normal.  For all I know, she is a controlling shrew, but this family has already learned the painful lesson that life is short. 

I am blessed to still have both of my parents.  I am also blessed that they are amazing parents that have taught me that family is the basis for all I have and that sharing my triumphs and commiserating in my sorrows with them makes it even better. Even though I am in my forties, they are still my safe place to land.  Knowing that they are there to back me up lets me be a better wife, mother, daughter, sister, and employee.  They make it possible to just be me. 

Knowing what I know about family and how it is supposed to be, I was sad for that woman and her daughter.    I was also reminded just how fortunate I am to be a part of my family.  Even on bad days, I know that between Dave and the kids, my parents, sisters, and the rest of the crazy crew, I am surrounded by love and support.   Once again, I am a lucky girl. 

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