The idea of celebrating a variety of holidays, in yesterday’s post, made me think of who and where we all come from. I have a friend who is adopted, so she can’t trace back, genetically, to her heritage. But she can follow the paths of the generous man and woman who chose her as their child. I think that is just as valid as blood lines where family-building is concerned.
Since my own background is so eclectic I have tried to incorporate as much of my personal history as I can into my current life. One of the ways that I honor the Native American side, is the art on one of my legs. Those tattoos are all Air images, which is very symbolic of that particular branch of my family tree. The knotwork and snake design on my left arm is a nod to my Irish background. It turns out that the Fire Llamas we came up with have a hint of the Mexican displayed there (Mexicans being basically the natives of South America blended with those dastardly conquering Spaniards). I feel pretty well covered (lol, no pun intended, because I do NOT have nearly enough ink) as far as showing off who I am in that regard.
I grew up with a lot of brown haired, brown eyed, brown skinned family members around me (literally, they were ALL around). And I’ve already told you how I had to change my driver’s license once I realized that I did NOT, it turns out, have blue eyes. When I married that Swede I saw what REAL blue eyes looked like. (Okay, he’s more Dane than Swede, but seriously, all those blonde Nordic people kinda look alike to me. White, they are all just very white. Sexy as hell, but still white.) My poor kids ended up a blend not unlike the United Nations.
Here’s the cool part though, they can go forward with no judgement, no prejudices, not a drop of hatred for “others” or those who are not like them. Because NO ONE is like them. And they are a little bit like nearly EVERYBODY. Unless, until …. in our lives this time around, the five of us Pentacle People in my tribe, have come across some folks who are as entertainingly blended as we are. I love it when that happens. It’s rare, but it’s wonderful when it does.
What I also find fun is how the different elements show up, how they manifest themselves physically in tiny and peculiar ways. My favorite example is something that I get asked about quite often. How do I sleep in the day time? How does Daniel manage to work nights and still get enough sleep during the day?
The bedroom in this house (where we have lived for over 15 years) is half-way below ground, the primary living area is upstairs, on a different level entirely from where we sleep. He can pull the shades and have a fairly dark room, away from the daily noise, allowing him to sleep really well. Even if it’s bright and hot outside. Here’s something we figured out a few years ago: I don’t need those blinds drawn. I don’t need perfect darkness to sleep, I never move those shades. Wanna know what we came up with for the reason? Or the thing we think is the reason?
Me ~ You can turn the light on if you need to, it won’t wake me up.
Him ~ I do turn the light on. I know it doesn’t wake you up. It never has.
Me ~ Of course not. My eyes are closed. When your eyes are closed no light gets in.
Him ~ No, when YOUR eyes are closed no light gets in. When MY eyes are closed light still gets in.
Me ~ Well it’s not my fault if you have thin useless eye lids.
Him ~ Right, I would be so much better off if I had hefty, meaty eyelids like yours that block out all light.
Me ~ Yes. You certainly would be.
We belive that because of my sturdy brown heritage I have thick and highly functioning eye lids, that are hefty enough to block out light. I also have very beefy fat cheeks, like a roly-poly toddler, and pretty puffy ear lobes too. He has thin cheeks. He has wispy wafer-thin, and mostly useless, eye lids. Because of this defect he has to use the vertical blinds to block out sunshine and over head lighting fixtures. It’s a great thing we had all those good blended genetics to pass along to our babies, otherwise they might have ended up with sadly thin eye lids.
Our card today is one that I want to talk about some more once I give you the definition Sylvia has printed on the back. I think it ties in a bit to what I’ve been talking about (eye lid jokes aside) and some of the conversations I’ve been having privately via e-mail with far away friends as well.
Strength is nothing more than enduring life – to be able to survive the heartaches and agonies we go through with our heads held high. Sometimes just walking through adversity to get to the other side is a sign of strength.”
The picture shows people walking along, all holding hands. I have been blessed with an enormous family, pretty much all of them willing to extend a hand to me whenever I needed it. I married into another family that was the same way. For this, I am thankful every single damn day. I know that not everybody has this, so it is up to the rest of us, those who DO have that support, to extend our hands to those who might need some.
There is another concept of family that must be given its full due, the non-blood kind of familial group. When you do not have, or have chosen not to have, born-in family, it is one of the most honorable actions you can make, to go out and build a tribe. Gather those like minded souls to you, and walk as this group in the illustration is doing, holding each others hands, being each others strength. (And if you are lucky enough to have hefty, light-deflecting eye lids, then yay for that too.)