That lyric has been swimming in my head all day. It's from the song Get Together by the Youngbloods. The reason it's been swimming is because the holidays are coming. For many it may conjure up images and ideals of a Norman Rockwell picture. For me, it means family. Family in my little world means stress. Not necessarily stress for me, but stress for my Grammy.
When I was little, Grammy's house was where we went for Christmas, Thanksgiving, etc. It was a big family occasion. It was FUN! For the most part, I thank my Grammy as the reason my cousins and I are close. It's a blessing to be able to call each and every one of them friends.
Now, for the past several years, Grammy has attempted various gatherings for everyone. This year, it's Thanksgiving. I realize that not everyone will be able to attend, but that's not the issue. The issue is general family bickering. A lot of "well, if this person comes my family won't" and "if you invite these people, these people won't show up at all". Petty, maybe. Childish, you betcha! I'm not saying everyone has to like everyone else. Not even close. I think it is possible to have an issue with someone, yet still push it aside and be civil, if only for a couple of hours on one day. I'm going to be realistic here and even say that my Grammy isn't exactly young anymore. All she really wants is for her ENTIRE family to gather for a SINGLE holiday and BE A FAMILY!! I get it.
For an example, Hubs family has a Christmas gathering every year. His family is huge! (around 60 or so)! They come in from various places and distances for this one event. All of them. Do they fight and argue and have some general unkind feelings with others. Oh yeah! There are people in his family who only speak to each other this one day a year. You know what though? For this one day Grandma and Pappy have their entire family together. They sit and look around and smile. They are basking in the glow of a job well done. They deserve to have one day a year to revel in the beauty that is family. To know that their family loves them so much that they choose to put aside differences and just be together. I have a great respect for that.
That is all my Grammy (and Papaw, can't forget him!) is asking for when she plans (with help from my aunts) these events. So, this Thanksgiving I'm going to Grammy's house, along with hubs and our kids. WE are going to show our respect and honor to a Grandmother who so dearly loves each and every member of her family. Whether anyone else shows up, especially after reading this post, is up to them. (Insert large guilt trip here)
I know, I know. So dramatic. Yet to me, family is what it is all about.