I'm feeing less sleepy today, although I'm still quite tired. This is no surprise to me, really, because the trip was quite tiring in places. Today I'll talk about the mini family reunion we had. When I knew that we were going to be in the Vancouver/Seattle/Washington state area, I contacted my aunt - my mom's oldest sister - to see if she could meet us. From there, we decided to get together with her daughters and their families plus her other sister and her daughters. I hadn't seen most of this family since my grandmother died - and honestly, I wasn't really there then because I was drinking all the time - and the others I hadn't seen for many years.
Having cancer and seeing so many people die has strengthened my need to connect with my family and everyone else that I love. Life is so short; it feels even doubly shorter to me because I wasted so much time being out of it. So since there was this opportunity to get some family together, I took it.
The day after the wedding, we went to a brunch with the wedding party and then had a long afternoon nap. We'd planned to leave a bit earlier in the afternoon, but the wedding preparations and stuff were tiring and we wanted to have a rest before the next part of the trip. We woke to my cousin's call - thank goodness she called, or I don't know when we would have got up - and were on our way.
We got to my cousin's house and everyone was there! My one aunt and her three daughters plus their partners and all of their kids but one - including the "kid" that is about 19 and was with his girlfriend - and my other aunt and one of her daughters plus her husband were there. It was so exciting!!! I didn't recognize everyone right away because in my head, everyone looked like they did from before. Which you'll remember was at least 15 years ago... so it's no surprise that everyone looked different. :)
That night, we talked and laughed and caught up and had a great time. When it got late, everyone else left and we stayed at that cousin's house.
It turns out that all three of my one aunt's daughters lived within a 5min drive of each other (the other aunt plus her daughter and her husband live further away and traveled to the get together). So we went over to one of their places for a very tasty brunch. There was soooo much yummy, yummy, yummy food and coffee and juice. And more talking and laughing and catching up.
It was wonderful. Ian got to meet everyone and they got to know him and I got to know them all a bit better. I am so glad that we were able to be there with this side of my family and to re-connect with them as I feel that I'm getting to know my whole family. I hope that these family reunions happen more often. In the meantime, there's email and all that... but email isn't the same as seeing people in person, or giving them hugs.