Thoughts On Family and Leaning In

I have spent lots of sweet time with family and loved ones this weekend, and it has all been so special. But there are still times when I feel like I don’t quite belong.

Maybe it’s because I see the world differently than some of the people around me, or because of the life experiences I’ve had that many will never share.

There could be (and probably are) a million reasons why I feel out of place sometimes in family gatherings. That being said, this weekend has been good for me because I am learning to practice what I preach when it comes to embracing myself and embracing others.

Several years ago, I ran across this quote and it really resonated with me:

“Do not chase people. Be you and do your own thing and work hard. The right people who belong in your life will come to you, and stay.”

And honestly? I believe it with my whole heart.

Just today, I remarked to Charlie that the girl singing at the Nashville Farmer’s Market sounded a lot like a long lost friend of mine. And I winced when I said it because the ache of loss still hits me when I think about that thirteen-year relationship that is never coming back. I am learning that my heart can simultaneously ache in grief and exhale in relief at the same time. Isn’t that something?

So I want to encourage you to keep showing up. In the ways that matter most to you and to the people who matter most to you. And in the end, those who matter will still be there. And the ones who fall away? Well, they were meant to reside in your life for but a season. Their time in your life for however-long was a gift in and of itself. Receive it and release it and keep making those right steps forward.

And know that I’m right there with you, walking the same path.

At the end of the day, no matter how much of a black sheep I feel in my family at times, I am falling into bed tonight knowing that I am fully loved and fully accepted by these people who share the same blood line and same family lineage. We don’t have to see eye to eye in order to love each other. And I can’t think of a more beautiful gift than that.


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