Today was Andrew’s annual family picnic. And I have been crying all night. πŸ˜₯

Maybe it’s just the jolt of changing hormones since I have cut back the breastfeeding in the last couple of days. Maybe it’s PMS. Maybe it’s regret. Maybe it’s just me being insane and crazy. I don’t know what it is.

Here’s the deal…

I miss my old family. Not my ex-husband, mind you. My old family. His family. Because no matter what, in that family, we all mattered to each other and we all took time to care for one another. And we always had each other’s back. And we were always pretty damn considerate of each other. Period. End of story.

Today, I sat with a family that was disconnected. It saddened me. Really, really saddened me. Because that’s not me. At. All. The dynamic just was so… off…

People sat in clique-y little groups. Some people never even spoke to me. Old women had underlying tensions. There was no comaraderie. Everyone was itching to leave as soon as they finished eating and a few did. People I hugged were emotionless and stiff. I won’t say everyone was that way but I would say at least half were.

Maybe most families are that way. I don’t know. All I know is what I am used to and how I believe a family should react to each other. My former family was not that way. And, if any of them were that way, I would have immediately called them out for it. Old timers will remember the post I had about that epic fight I got in with my now ex-ex-evil-sister in law as proof of that fact.

And so that is how the day went. And it sent me into such a ridiculous tailspin that I didn’t get anything done tonight and all I want to do now is go to bed. So depressing. 😦

This sucks. I am a huge family person. I have been ever since Tim left me in 2000. That’s my survival mechanism… not that I need a survival mechanism right now. I’m just saying…

I now do fully understand where Andrew gets his unemotional side from, though. Some of the people I physically touched today felt as though they had no warmth anywhere in their bodies. It is a very eerie feeling when you touch that. Unnerving, in fact.

I think Andrew sensed that I was a bit “off” towards the end because he was very warm and loving and waited patiently while I stood with his grandmother to see the last few off. He knew I was feeling a bit disappointed in some things that were done and said but made sure I knew that he loved me regardless. It was very sweet. πŸ™‚

He’s used to all this. Which is sad. But now I understand why he does things a certain way with his family. Now I understand why he doesn’t seem to be too attached to them and doesn’t want to count on them for anything ever, even though he sometimes can’t help it.

It makes me so determined to show him that family isn’t like this. That OUR family between us will NOT be like that. That he can ALWAYS count on me as his family. As much as he hates when I give in to James and help when I really shouldn’t, I think he understands that that is my feeling about what family is and he appreciates it to a certain degree. At least, I hope so. 😐

I know for a fact that I don’t want Sean to grow up feeling the way Andrew does about family. I want Sean to know that his brother and sister ALWAYS have his back. That he can count on us to drop everything for him because he is important to us. James, while not the best family member right now, has the base upbringing to be that for Sean someday. And Chelsea will *ALWAYS* have his back. I have absolutely no doubt about that one. I’m so happy that I at least have that.

The whole day was just very depressing for me. I am somewhat realizing that when Andrew’s grandmother passes away, my poor son will have no sense of extended family like my kids got to have. This is the *ONLY* time ever in my life when I wish my dad lived closer, especially now that he finally “gets” what I mean by “family”. As much as he drives me absolutely batshit crazy as his daughter, he is an excellent, excellent, excellent grandfather. He must be making up for the father years…Β  πŸ˜†

I hope this feeling doesn’t happen after every family event or holiday. My days of trying to be a matriarch are long gone. I hope that as Sean gets older, I can create new traditions for us as a small family unit that he can at least hand down to his own family to show them how much they mean to him and that he can eventually turn our small family unit into a large family unit again.

I also think that I am going try to force myself to give genuine hugs to people in Andrew’s family from here on out. Today, when I hugged someone in particular, their touch was so stiff and rigid and cold and emotionless that I almost recoiled physically. It was that noticable.

And the first thing I thought after that happened was how sad it must be for that person to go through life without feeling anything. Now… maybe I am totally being a bitch for assuming this person has no emotions… but today that person felt dead when I hugged them. Extremely sad. Heart wrenching. 😦

So now, I am going to make a point of genuinely hugging those people and hoping some of my heart and soul seeps into theirs and gives them just a teeny bit of warmth that maybe they can share with someone else in their lives. πŸ˜† I sound like a tree hugger, huh? πŸ™„

Anyway, wish me luck because I have a feeling I’m gonna need it! πŸ˜†

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