Photo by Natalya Zaritskaya
I am grateful for ... my family
It is sometimes hard to express one's feelings about the everyday people in their lives. We look at them as rocks that will always be there while we go about our lives trying to make our mark and do what we do.
But I also think that many of us rub those rocks the wrong way and sometimes they turn to dust. I can relate.
My blood family didn't offer much in the way of guidance here. It was a hot mess of problems, some of which I could not help but make my own. I grew up seeing other families and wondering why mine couldn't be that perfect. Of course, the older I got the more I realized that my perception as a child was colored by my desire for something else, more than it was on the reality of the situation. As I've gotten older I have fonder memories of my childhood and my broken family and the lessons I learned, as well as the internal strength I had to develop to survive.
Now my second chance to create a healthy family life has given me a new perspective. It has been almost twenty years since I met my second wife, and while there have been a few hiccups along the way, she more than anybody I've known has taught me the value of grace. She is strong and smart, but also kind. My daughter, now almost 13 years old, is a shining example of what can happen when you devote your life to helping somebody discover the best things about themselves — and letting them build on that discovery. She is sharp, funny, compassionate, and truly a miracle.
We have been through so much ... success, failure, tragedy ... and are stronger than ever. I am truly grateful for that.