Maybe this entry will cause some familial trouble.....but I doubt it, as I have no idea if any of the Family reads my blog.
Notice I capitalized "Family" above. I've always felt that it should be, since I see Family as an entity, it's own being, certainly deserving of and uppercase "F".
My husband is from Cape Breton, out on Canada's east coast. I am a military brat, but mostly I identify with our western provinces, as that's where the majority of my Family resides.
I have been out to see my husband's Family only twice in our 14 years of marriage.... and those 2 visits were in a 12 month time span, during which our first child was born, and my Father-in-Law was ill, and then sadly passed away. I wonder if these things colour my feelings and perceptions of the Family. I suppose they do, how could they not.
Every one seems very nice, and without question, I was welcomed with open arms as my husband's wife ( did I mention he wasn't there for the majority of both visits?). I must admit I was overwhelmed with the sheer volume of Family. To this day I still have a hard time keeping track of everyone!
11 years have passed since I saw most of my husband's Family....young cousins have married, gone to University, had kids of their own. More loved ones have passed away, and are greatly missed.
I am an Auntie now, as my husband's younger brother and his wife had a beautiful little boy a few months ago. I've seen the pictures, and he is gorgeous ( nearly as cute as mine were ;) ), but it makes me sad that I will probably never meet him before he graduates from high school.
I know the East Coast Family only through stories from my husband, and now, thanks to Facebook, I am privy to all they post about their daily lives. I feel a little voyeuristic though, married to a family I am never going to be a part of in the day to day scheme of things. 3/4 of my kids have never met their uncles, and only see their Nanny and Poppa every few years.
Yup, I guess I'm jealous of how close they all are, and that they have so many common memories and experiences. They all seem a little foreign, even a little exotic to me. :) I call them my husband's "People".
Having said all that, I love my own Family. For the first time in my adult life, we are living less than a days' drive from my parents' and my sister. What a change to see them on a regular basis than just a few times a year. As for my extended Family, well, they live in BC, and much like my husband's Family, have their own lives and live quite close to each other. I'm pretty sure I could pass a lot of my younger cousins on the street and not really know who they were. Again though, thanks to Facebook, I can see on some their walls what's going on, and feel like maybe we're not that far apart.