I have been thinking about family. There are so many kinds, so many components, but I think everyone recognises the concept. This week I spent some time with mine. I don’t live far away from them, but stuff gets in the way (doesn’t it always?) and I don’t see them as often as I would like.
My family is like a tree with many branches – this time I spent some time with some of the women in my clan. We were four generations sitting on a bench in the spring sunshine. There were snowdrops on the lawn, a blue sky and birds chirping everywhere. We shared tea and chatted about everyday life as we relaxed.
On my way home I thought about our lives and how entwined they are. We call each other when we have news, or when we don’t. We have shared good and bad times, and seen the best and the worst of each other. We have hurt and forgiven each other, and have now arrived at a place were we just enjoy each other’s company.
My family is important to me, we love each other and they are my own flesh and blood. But I also have another family, just as important. I have a handful of good, dear friends who have stood by me through thick and thin. Most of them are women, sisters. I have a few friends who know me inside out, perhaps better than my family. And the connection we have is just as strong as the blood-bond I share with my family.
What is this ability we have to create connections? I don’t think it is unique to human beings, far from it, we seem to be some of the worst creatures at it. But we do seem to have an innate ability to connect with other beings. I think it is love that enables us to do it. The love of the world we live in, the love of our fellow human beings and the love for ourselves.
When I’m happy, I am open and able to invite people in. If I’m miserable, stressed and grumpy I just want the world to leave me alone. I’m very lucky, because I tend to be happy most of the time. When we are happy and open, we make new connections and extend our family. Today I chatted with a neighbour I haven’t spoken to before, and am very happy about it – now there is one less stranger in the world. I have also made plans to meet with an old friend, it is so important to keep each other close.
I’ll be sure to tell the people that I love what their love means to me. To have the security to fall and know I will be picked up. To have the safety of being wrong, and know I will be forgiven. To laugh and cry with them, to talk or be silent together. To know that I will be there when someone needs me. Supporting each other, encouraging each other, brewing love in a tea pot and just enjoying each other’s company.
Finding the community of Cycle Harmony has made a huge difference to me. I am delighted to be writing to you from the Red Tent and hope to share thoughts and experiences you recognise, or find useful to ponder upon. I look forward to working with you all in exploring what it is to be women, and hope to hear from you. ~ Vild