Monday, June 27, 2011

Everything That Matters

Last weekend, after a family dinner, I had a pretty poignant conversation with my sixteen year old cousin. She's at the stage in her life where she's starting to seriously consider and weigh her college options. She shared that she's really hesitant to go out of state, away from home, family and friends.

I can completely relate to her feelings. I've been battling the same feelings but I know that leaving is something that I have to do and that she will eventually have to do, in her own time. I told her to go, dream, and explore. That friends would change, that priorities would shift and that she needed to go forge her own path in the big wide world.

 I told her to look around the table, at our family that surrounded us laughing, bickering, playing with the dogs, and just being together. Everyone who truly matters was around that table. I tried to get her to understand that no matter where she goes in life, the family wold have her back and always be there for her, regardless of where she travles.

I'm not sure she "got it" but it served as a very purposeful reminder that I need to take my own advice. That where ever I land, my family will always be here and I'll always carry a part of them with me. We owe it to ourselves to spread our wings, soar to new heights, and dream big dreams. There will always be family dinners to come home to and long talks to have on the deck. We're already carrying everything that matters within our hearts.