When I think of family, unity, love and support are the characteristics that quickly come to mind. When I was younger, I starved for those things, but as I’ve evolved and gotten older, I no longer feel the need for them…especially from people who aren’t genuine, willing or ready to give them to me. I know some people don’t show their feelings easily or aren’t open to expressing “love” and “signs of affection”, because they may feel uncomfortable.
However, when you are a part of a family, these things shouldn’t even be a matter of question, unless you aren’t “a part” of your family. I lack no hesitation to say, I feel as though I’m not very much a part of mine. About 4-5 years ago, I found myself slowly but surely, drifting apart from them. Family functions didn’t excite me anymore, and going out together seemed more of a hassle, as opposed to fun.
But, for the sake of keeping “stuff” down, I obliged. Physically, I was there, but mentally I had tapped out before I left the house. Now, that’s not to say my folks are bad people, but whenever we would get together, “noise” was always made, and I somehow was responsible for it.
Grudges are held, attitudes are formed and conversations that used to be continuous are now non-existent. I know, because I’m soooo guilty of it! Nonetheless, I still somehow feel we should be able to come together and support each other, because after all, that’s what family is for…. or so, I thought.
One of the most affirming things to me, was when I wrote my first book, Glitter but no gold: How I turned my wounds into wisdom. I was so excited for my book signing, so I invited my family to not only attend, but to purchase a book, or two. However, what I experienced was a little (I expected it) disappointment. I’ll admit, I was very hurt and upset, but then again, the feeling didn’t last very long. I knew the majority of them weren’t going to support me, for the simple fact of it being me!
No longer phased by their actions or sweating the small stuff, I chose to further distance myself from them. Let’s face it, I’ve wanted to break away from them for quite some time now. Just so we’re clear, they were not sabotaging me or causing me any physical harm, but they were destroying my peace of mind! However, I always had these feelings of betrayal, but how could I betray them, if I was doing what was best for me?
Yes, they are my family, but sometimes you’ve got to walk away from people, so you can walk into the life God has willed for you. Those people might be friends, a boyfriend/girlfriend and even family. However, just because you love them, doesn’t mean you’re to be around them!
My writing career is taking off and my dreams have begun to come to fruition. There are so many wonderful things I see happening for my life, but I can’t attain them, unless I create some space between me and some of the people I love.
Maybe that’s what you need to do for yourself too! Don’t subscribe to anyone else’s ideas, plans or goals for your life. Be your own individual and do the things you want to do, regardless if they support you or not! It’s okay to love them from afar, and not pass opportunities by, because you are afraid of leaving someone behind.
For a very long time, that’s what I’ve been held hostage to. I would often say, “Oh my gosh, I want to do such and such, but my family will still be Montgomery, while I’m over here just living my life”…and I’m perfectly okay with that! Besides, I can always leave and see them when I get back!