My Family That Was…
Life was a blur of confusion; contradictions.
Days blurred together in a little kid’s present tense.
The “always now” – too young to reflect and process.
Past days lurched forward through time, bursting unannounced into the present at the worst moment, like an obnoxious, uninvited guest.
Parents forgot that they were the centre of everything. They went out of control, abdicated responsibilities like the careless children they once were.
Their own offspring got lost in the mix, left emotionally out in the wild.
Some families seemed happy, bonded by trust.
Mine wasn’t. Were there others like us?
Father’s hands that were calloused yet gentle were also feared,
sometimes raised in anger against those they should protect.
Mother’s eyes and heart were kept to herself,
unable to deal as an adult, she surrendered to depression and booze.
No response came from her. No conversation seemed to reach her.
She was a woman thinking like a little girl, still missing her dead dad;
She couldn’t take the responsibility of parenthood.
Spun around in their young hearts, the offspring took on adult pains,
responsibilities came too early; dark abuses twisted roles out of shape;
Chronological adults became helpless from their misadventures.
Kids, forced to grow up too damn soon, sought proxy-parents to show them love in safe, harmless little doses. Over the years, they learned to shrug off the burdens that weighed them down since birth.
In my family that was, I was with them when they needed me.
My Family That Is…
Love, trust, and sharing are part of a grand journey,
where you find out who your honest friends and beloved family are.
The present time is the only time there is.
You learn that loyalty and love need not be used only in moments of crisis, but are a strength in the quietest, smallest daily moments.
You learn to be comfortable in yourself, and allow yourself and others to just be.
You learn that suffering, loss and recovery are common to us all.
My family that is, understands these things and lives from them.
You can forgive others, because you have worked to forgive yourself.
You can truly love others, because you truly love yourself.
In my family that is, they’re with me when I need them.
My Family That Will Be…
I’ll fast-forward the dream, looking towards the babies and children of today, to envision the grown-ups of tomorrow.
Sufferring will still come to them, as it does to us all,
but they will rise to the challenges the world will offer.
They will greet it with an open hand instead of a closed fist,
and an open heart instead of a closed mind or silent mouth.
They’ll remember to live by the golden rule their predecessors forgot: Treat others as you’d have them treat you.
In my family that will be, they will know who they are,
and they will feel loved and be worthy of love.
The family that will be will stay together and will be there to care.