Blood Relations v. Acquaintances v. Family

Its been a little while since I’ve posted.  In case you haven’t noticed yet – I don’t post a whole lot – and then suddenly, you get a lot of thoughts from me at once.  This has a lot to do with the way my head works.  I tend to keep a lot of things bottled up, while I work over all of it.  And then, I get a handle on what I’m trying to work with – and I type.  And type.  And type even more.  Definitely a good thing I don’t write for a living, eh?  LOL

I’ve mentioned before that I’m not really into the political world.  That doesn’t mean that I don’t read about it – just that its not something I spend every waking hour on.  I have a couple of acquaintances that are really charged up over political things.  At one time, I consider these folks to be fairly close friends, but when I suggested that politics was something I was hardly interested in — the tone of our “friendship” changed quite a bit.  I get the point that friendship is built on commonalities, but I was under a distinct impression that it wasn’t built on something as inane as politics.

Which brings me over to the concept of family.  There are a number of people I count as family.  And a number of others I count as blood relatives.  The difference?  Exactly how it sounds.  One set of folks are people I care a great deal about — they are and always will be family to me.  The other are people that I am merely blood-related to.  My blood relatives are, for the most part, die-hard conservatives of one form or another.  Now, again, my point isn’t about politics – but rather how holding on to one’s politics like a deeply held spiritual belief is (in my opinion) a poisonous thing.  My blood relatives hate the current President of the United States.  My take-away is a nearly three-fold understanding of that “hatred”.

  1. He’s not a conservative — a rather silly notion in my opinion.  Hating someone over their political ideology is a lot like saying you hate someone because they speak with a southern drawl.
  2. He’s black — Oh yessir.  There’s a lot of unhealthy sentiment down this road in the blood relations.  “That darkie” is the comment I tend to hear a lot.  And to be honest, hearing this kind of chatter gets my blood boiling quickly.  Its also a primary reason that I don’t spend a lot of time going to the various family reunions.  Its bad enough that I share a last name with some of these folks – much less some common genetic material.
  3. He’s a “Secret” Muslim — a complete idiotic notion.  However, since I came out of the proverbial closet as a Pagan to the majority of my family — President Obama is seen in a far better light than this “Satan worshipper”.  Needless to say, I’m not likely to be welcomed at many a Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner with the blood relations.

Interestingly enough, the people I consider family seem to be far more “together” in their pink-meats than the blood-relations.  Some of them do not agree with the President on ideological terms.  Not because of his race, or the notion that he is (laughably) a Muslim.  They disagree with his positions on various political points on the basis of what they see as appropriate governmental positions on various issues of the day.  They look at everything from the basis of how it works within their understanding and perspective of governmental and societal issues.  To be short about it, they THINK about what they are reading/hearing/seeing and make a decision about the man’s position — not a personal dislike of the individual, but rather his positions.

What makes the difference for me between a family member and a blood relation and an acquaintance?  A blood relative is someone I am related to — and wish that I weren’t.  An acquaintance is someone I know, but not well enough to consider to be family.  Family members are people that I will protect, nurture, and enjoy life with at any and all costs.  I have a good number of acquaintances, some blood relatives, and a number of folks I am thrilled to call family.

In the circle of the family – we don’t always agree politically, spiritually, or even personally on various issues…but we value one another as important members in our respective lives.  It isn’t just the fact that we respect one another – we care about one another – we love one another…for the unique individuals that we are – faults and all.  In the end…my family members are the ones that I put into my lifeboat…and am happy to have them there.  And there’s always room in the lifeboat for more…

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