52 Weeks of Gratitude · Life · Relationships

Week 3: Family

Another major “gratitude” topic.

Having been born in Indonesia but having spent more of my life in the UK, it’s not surprising that daily life is a beautiful collision of traditions and backgrounds. Sometimes it’s a pain, other times I get to enjoy two very different ways of life that are as fascinating as each other. Appreciating hundreds upon hundreds of years of history that shapes a particular culture has always made me feel like a single thread in a tapestry: insignificant – yet a part of something incomprehensibly big.

I have two loving parents who are all too willing to sacrifice everything without a second of thought for their children. A mother so caring that she could hardly bear to watch her children make their own mistakes. A father who thinks of his family’s needs first and of his own needs last. A sister whose bubbling personality will all too soon grow into a woman who will bring brightness into the lives she touches. They have played a major part in shaping me into the person that I am now.

Aside from my blood family, there are many people in my life I could happily include in this post. The family that I chose for myself. The family that stepped in and embraced me after I moved away from my blood family when I went into higher education.

The church family has been a huge part in my life. They’ve seen a hungry student and fed me quite a few hot meals. I’ve been able to integrate into the church’s young adult community and spent memorable Sunday afternoons laughing, eating, and talking together. I’ve had more offers with practical help than I’d have a chance to remember or thank appropriately.

My boyfriend’s family run an “open house” policy where the one rule is that anyone is welcome to anything they need, as long as they get told when something’s about to run out so they can get some more in advance. I was a little baffled with my boyfriend’s generosity until I met the rest of his family. Then it all made sense. It’s almost like they all have this one gene that predisposes them to give and help and serve. I was so effortlessly included into the family that I feel as comfortable as if I was at my own home.

I’ve talked a lot about my close university friends, but they still merit another little note in this gratitude post. They, too, are my adopted family in my university town. I could hardly have lucked out into a better community of people.

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