Can you consider your roots without considering your family? I don’t think so. I do understand that perhaps not everyone has family in the most traditional sense, but even those people find themselves family where it works best.
I am blessed with some of the best family around, I am convinced of it! I think my brother and I and all my cousins tend to be happy, well adjusted, successful people not just because of our parents, but because of our family as a whole.
I wrote a bit about the “farm” in my trees post, but the farm was about ever so much more than just trees. This is where the familial relationships took root and developed and were tended. It seems a bit odd to say that this is where we “got to know each other” because it doesn’t seem that family gets to know each other like we do with other relationships in our lives. But yet there is an element of that.
One of the reasons that having the “farm” sold was so incredibly difficult for me had nothing whatsoever to do with the land itself. There was that element, as that place had become a symbol of happy and simpler times for my generation. But that wasn’t all of it. It had more to do with how the family relationships were tended to there. The wide land gave us space and brought us together. How could I not be emotional over such a thing as this? How could we continue to tend the relationships that we planted there without the land? And strangely, by the time the land was sold, we were not using it in the ways that I grew up with, it was a moot point, I just didn’t realize that at the time.
I am not saying that giving up that land was easy for me. But what I realized over the next couple years was that my parents generation was not giving up on us as I had supposed. They weren’t giving up on the relationships that took root there, it was just time to move them to another space. In the years that the decision was made to give up the farm, and the years following the selling of it, I came to realize that I would receive more support than I could ever imagine from my parents generation and this would absolutely have nothing to do with where anyone was living at the time.
And now I see that we have yet another lovely and wonderful place where all these relationships come together and are cultivated. There is another place that has come to represent all that the farm meant to me. A place I long to be near even though I can only be there maybe once a year, and that longing has little to do with homes or the yards or the trees there, and everything to do with this strong desire to get back to my family relationships and harvest all the knowledge I can gain in the time I am there. I feel wrapped in the comfort of strong people with strong opinions and wonderful intelligence whom I have known all my life. I love to watch the generations, even the newest, sit together and play together and laugh heartily. We have the opportunity to continue tending those relationships in a new place, and that is so precious to me.
So this is a great big hug and a thank you to my parents generation which has faithfully tended and supported and cared and infused knowledge and so many many more things on my generation of family. We may not get the chance to say it, but we feel more confident and content and at peace than you even know, and this has everything to do with your hard work!