We were having a conversation about an upcoming family gathering.
One of us said, “You know, it’s family – x.”
It was a sad but true statement. It was meant to be a bit sarcastic, perhaps even a little snarky. As I thought about it later, I realized how untrue and unfair it was and is. Because even when we miss someone for a variety of reasons—perhaps someone chose to leave or had no choice at all—our family isn’t incomplete because someone is missing.
Just because my dad is gone doesn’t mean our family gatherings are incomplete. Yes, we miss him, and there is a gap without him, but we are still a whole family, and we can enjoy our celebrations.
Just because my ex left our marriage doesn’t mean the rest of us can’t and don’t have good times together. We still make great memories, and we are still a family.
With the holidays that are approaching, you might be feeling a bit shaky without someone. That’s okay. It’s not going to be the same, and it’s okay to feel sad about that.
It’s also okay to make some new memories with some of the same people or different people. Appreciate who you have. Build bridges where you can. Love and be loved.
You might be surprised how God shows up right in the middle of your confusing family math equation!