Family First

I’ve always been fiercely loyal. Maybe it’s being a Scorpio, maybe it’s because I saw my parent’s families not being very loyal to each other and the damage that caused, or maybe I see a need for a good friend and loyalty in others and feel that I’ve met kindred spirit and I want to be that loyal, true friend.

I’ve typically been that way in romantic relationships too. In my former marriage, I had all kinds of secrets. I didn’t share the problems or struggles with others because I felt it was a betrayal of some kind of vow I may have made to keep any and all flaws hidden from public view. It was more out of fear of what others may say or how I might be judged than loyalty towards the end. And after all my trust had been betrayed, keeping those not-so-dark, but perhaps embarrassing flaws hidden wasn’t all that important. I’m trying to not be so guarded in this relationship, because I have a group of amazing friends that are there no matter what; judgement free, and ready to help a girl out.

Because I don’t have a large or very close family, MY family; the one Kevin, Luna Bell and I have created, is the most important thing in my life. We’ve been through a lot from the very beginning of Kevin’s and my relationship to today, when we have a toddler, and busy work schedules and the need to still be individuals and not just partners and parents. And from time to time, we have to deal with those in our lives who are less than helpful in our efforts to be a strong, happy family. There are those who’s selfishness and disrespect has left their mark on our relationship and caused some trying times. So how do you deal with family or “family” or friends who take advantage of a kind heart, a willingness to forgive, and continue disrespect your relationship? How do you call out those that aren’t worthy of your friendship, but you still feel a loyalty towards?

Full disclosure, I don’t have a clue.

I’m still navigating the delicate spiderweb that is family dynamics. Being part of a new family (or a few families in my case) and being the mom of a new member of that family can be difficult. There is also an age gap with Kevin and myself that puts me in the age bracket just above his oldest sister and in old-enough-to-be-her parent range of his youngest. Still I look to these amazing “sisters” as role models for how to be a good sister, wife, girlfriend, and especially mom. I’ve found a group of women who are fighters; strong and proud and always there to give a kind word, an encouraging hug and some of the best support when Luna Bell was first born and all through her fight in the NICU. This is the family that I think I always hoped for. There are also amazing older cousins to Luna Bell. Three strong, smart, active in their community and social issues young women who couldn’t be better role models to my daughter. And a young man who just turned 6 and watches over Luna Bell when they play, has always been super sweet to her since the day they met. And then the little girls. One is one year, five days older than Luna Bell and they are two peas in a pod! And a nearly one year old that Luna Bell doesn’t know what to do with yet, but will love when she can join in the running around!

Finding family or friends who can support you in the most difficult times of motherhood, or parenthood and the trials of relationships, is like finding a diamond in a sandbox. Those reassuring words that come at the best time or the recollections of when their child was your child’s age that make you feel like your kiddo is going to be ok. In a sea of negativity and judgement, these people are life rafts.

I can only hope that I am the same support to my family and friends. I try every day to be supportive, a good listener, give advise when I can and sometime just say “I’m so sorry, that sucks!” I love my family and chosen family and am loyal to the end. And luckily the family members I have become close to are amazing. I want to be open and kind, but I’m guarded with most people. Too many have mistaken an easy smile and a kind heart as willingness to be taken advantage of or have myself, my relationship or my family disrespected. I learned long ago to listen to my instincts and to hold some at arms length. As we get deep into Scorpio season; I am a Scorpio. I am fiercely loyal, quick to dismiss toxic people and I will always keep my family first.

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