Lately, I’ve been questioning the definition of family.
My whole life, I believed that it was the people I shared a name with, who shared blood. I believed it was with the people whom I got my blue eyes from, or my dark tanned skin in the summer, or my thick eyebrows.
As I grow up though, I realize that’s not really family.
Sure, we share biological qualities but there’s more to family than just the superficial. There’s depth.
This is the scary part about growing up because we confront the lies we’ve been fed as children.
I had a family that called every day… but one day they stopped. And I didn’t know why. I didn’t know what I did.
I was fed lies.
And it hurt.
I grew up. I realized that family isn’t just the people that share a name with me, they’re people who would be there for me in a heartbeat.
I’ve lived only a short 19 years but sometimes I think adults underestimate age. Age is just a number, but maturity is the quality of life you want to live and the person you want to be. Maturity is how you deal with things and how you dare to confront them. I get so frustrated with adults a lot (it’s okay, I understand they get frustrated with me as well) because they forget that they are people that children look up to. They forget that their actions set examples.
Family is the definition of friends. I realized that. I matured in that sense. I stopped being pushed around by adults who would complain to me about their relationship between others that I loved. I realized that no matter what, if we were family, you would want to have a relationship with me, not based on our relationship amongst others.
Family are the people that will sit with you at 2 a.m. in the middle of your breakdown, either a. on the phone or b. in person. “Hold up, I’m on my way with the only two men worth it in life, Ben and Jerry’s” (and they know your favorite flavor).
Family are the people that will support your dreams but give you down to earth observations about it. “You want to move to the other side of the world? Go ahead, I am proud of you but be aware of the things that can happen to you…”
Family are the people that you can talk on the phone for hours with and catch up on every intimate detail about the past 5 months you haven’t talked. “Wait, so you met who and did what?!”
Family are the people that you can absolutely be weird with, and you KNOW there is NO JUDGEMENT AT ALL (honestly, they judge you but still love you besides the point). Included in this, family are the people that go out of their way to embarrass you. “Where is that baby picture of Veronica when…”
Because family isn’t just related by blood, family is based on actions. Hence why I love the saying “friends are the family you choose”.
Because, okay, you don’t decide the people who raise you… But you damn sure can make a family of your own.