Family is synonymous with sacrifice.
Today I’m supposed to be packing for a long, long, looooong overdue weekend away with my husband. Two blissful days in a gorgeous Michigan cottage while my parents hang at home with the kids. Instead, I’m snuggling a preschooler with a particularly awful chest cold. So long weekend away! So long sleeping in! So long romantic dinners! So long uninterrupted adult conversations!
And yet…There’s a certain beauty in it. In knowing in the deepest depths of yourself that what you’re doing is the right thing for someone you love. Some days its reaaaaallly hard to see. But in hindsight, its always there. I think we all know that being a parent means doing things you never thought you would for the tiny people you love. But its not just parents. Its family.
Sure, from the moment of conception, children literally suck life and nourishment from their mothers. So there’s that. But it goes the other way too. Lately, I’ve seen it in my parents, retirees who have given up their carefree travels to care for my 97 year old grandma who can’t bear to see them go. As they age, parents that once gave us everything diminish and slowly take it all back.
And in-beween, there are the million daily dilemmas both big and small, that families face: the big presentation at work or the school play; the couples weekend or the sick child; the job with family healthcare benefits or the risky startup. Sometimes the choice is obvious, sometimes not. It can be so damned hard to walk away from something you wanted so bad, to leave a piece of yourself behind. But somehow, in the end, we always end up with more. So much more.