Real Family or Familiar Relatives?

Just attended my first wedding, not counting the several attended as a child with my parents not only did I attend but I was one of the groomsmen for My older brother.  Now he knows how I feel about weddings and wearing suits but after 9 years of no suit and a few wedding invite turn downs I was there, and had a great time. There is a lot i plan on going into surrounding weddings marriage and other events that occurred around this occasion…there may be time for that. I would like to make time to focus on what weddings are about*, Family.

I am now more than I have ever believe that there is a large difference  between being related to someone and being ones families. Not so much you say? Does an adopted kid with 2 loving parents not have a family? If blood relations were a prerequisite for family then marriage would not make one family or on the other hand we would all be related, well in the biblical and most other religious senses we would be due to shared ancestry. What exactly do you define as family?

As marriage is an extension of dating and that aspect of relationships I will use observations from dating in order ignite some thought in whom we consider family. My mother, brother Sister and I moved to America in 1994. I was 11 and it was the 3rd continent we had lived in. Never lived in one place long enough to develop the urge to have a clique, let alone the seemingly unspoken rule in Western culture that men and women can not be friends without ulterior motive (At least once the ulterior motives for hugs no longer end at a quick snapping of the bra… for her little pain and your laughing pleasure as you run off) I was one of the few guys who had female friends.

Girls would often come to me to discuss relationship issues they have and eventually the guys did too in their own ways the same to some level. AS we all got older the issues remained, which worried me as before the issues sometimes stemmed from the inexperience and fleetingness of crushes and high-school flings, but now the same was coming form serious feelings from supposedly ‘experienced’ people and there was potential for actual marriage and family making. A friend that was dating another friend of mine came to me for some advice on another of the similar issues and complaints that they both had for their multiple year on and off relationship. I asked them if they considered me a good friend, they said yes. Then i asked them to think of the things the person they are with had done and continues to do. Then i asked them if we would still be friends if i did even a fraction of those things. They said no. Then i asked them to think about why they let someone who is supposedly more important to them than all of their friends get away with things more things that you would let all their combined friends do to them. Why do many of us hold the one we are with to lower standards than we do our friends? Could it be that we are holding them to the ‘family’ standard, since they could potentially be family?

This family standard I refer to is that of letting them get away with the grimiest isht just because they are family. It is the feeling that brings random 5th and 6th cousins out of the woodwork when someone gets ahead in life. It is the feeling that would probably have my mother saying i didn’t do it even if she caught me standing there with blood on one hand and in the other a knife. I refuse to have it be the feeling that results in me having a wife. And neither should you or anyone else.

One example is hardly enough to convince anyone of anything so here is some more. I had a great time meeting my Mothers sisters again after 15 long years. I mixed up the names of her two eldest sisters and while we laughed as they corrected me, I crouched down and looked up at them and said maybe I would have recognized them better from that angle as it was the way I knew them for the 5 years i was in Kenya.

The first time I saw a blood relative was when one auntie came to visit us in France when i was about 3. I don’t even really remember it but i’m told it happened, then from 5.5 to 11 years of age, lived in Kenya. now this may be an African thing but i never had the shortage of Aunties and Uncles growing up, actually Miriam, half malay – half italian expressed the same thing happening. Close family friends to colleagues were called as such by younger people. Still to this day I have to ask if there is an actual relation. Well at least with the families of african descent, the few non african aunties and uncles it was rather easy to tell… although by now there are a few married in.

With this marriage there are now a bunch of people to the already large number of blood relatives that know me less than the bartenders at Cafe Peru (a little bar i go to when I’m in Rome). Saying this is not to point a finger anywhere, circumstances just resulted in near relatives not being in a situation to provide what ‘family’ typically does. My mother always and continues to push in the connection, but to her, my relatives and to you that are reading this I did not live without people who helped, who cared, who laughed, who cried, who supported, who led by example. I had many friends, I was not without family. I say to the new relatives and the old ones, I appreciate any positive feelings you have towards me but I would cherish feelings built on a foundation of friendship and actually knowing me and not just falling back on a social niceties.

I would rather someone assumed the worst about me and left me alone than tried to be a part of my life by assuming good things about me.

Ok my new lil sister told me earlier today about reading Rantatonne and said i think too much, so let me get to the point. I say little sister, not  because I love and care for my older brother and he and she love and care for each other. I say sis not because my Mother has taken her in to the nest and i don’t find it weird when she calls her mom. I say sis unit not because  she has become the older sister my other lil sister has wanted for her 21 years of living with 2 older brothers. I do not say family because having her in the house is like being in the house alone. I say sister for all these things and more, because she is just that, my friend, and my sis, Stella.

im the lil one in the very center my brother is the one on the far right in the blue. the others are cousins

im the lil one in the very center my brother is the one on the far right in the blue. the others are cousins

Merriam-Webster dictionary definitions for Family and Relative

*weddings pertain to be about this new Family when in many cases we all know it is about more. Money, religion, social constructs, alliances, power etc etc One of the things i find odd is when people say they want to be a princess on their wedding day. They forget that pretty much most royal weddings are not for love and in many cases decided far before the princess even has an idea of what marriage is, in some cases the princesses did not even meet whom they were to be married to and they had no say in the matter whatsoever.

Welcome back to Rantatonne, apologies for the almost year long silence. The emotional content of this rAnt may be partially due to listening to the following song while rAnting

 sooooooo there are many reasons to dislike beyonce a few of which i have previously touched upon in the rAnt  Beyonce looks like… but i have to say after multiple listens to this song i am now 50.000000000000000000000000000133 % in like with Beyonce

here is the link to her official video. HALO : BEYONCE. You cannot embed it, i was going to put a smart insult here to a reason why but i can’t think of one I am out of rAnt form… maybe in a few weeks ill come back and write something funny. If you havent seen it, she doesnt look terrible in it, the whole video is like the part in the No Doubt video ‘Underneath it all’ when it gets all dreamy and Gwen Stefani has the ‘make it look like you have no make-up’ make-up on and gets even hotter, speaking of which here is Gwen…

2 responses to “Real Family or Familiar Relatives?

  1. Very touching, yet very personal rAnt….even if you didn’t want it to be. Your conclusion….ends the topic perfectly…
    To family.REAL family.


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