Friday, November 27, 2015

Friday Blog Challenge: Family

Now Playing: The Cure - Push

Hope everyone had a happy Thanksgiving :D (if in 'murica, of course. If not, a happy Thursday!).

Yesterday was pretty good. I wasn't particularly productive during the morning but my brother and mom picked up my slack and cleaned up and cooked. (Or well. Heated up the food we bought from Publix). Dinner was delicious and Silvia got to stop by later, carrying brownies. We tried out the marshmallow delight that came with the pre-prepared dinner and it was. . .interesting. I didn't think it so bad. Silvia was horrified >.>

Afterwards I texted Ren and she called me. (Most likely because I used the word "meltdown" in said text). We talked for a while--about Star Wars, about E, about school and Thanskgiving--and then right before she left, Silvia helped me decorate for Christmas while my brother watched Malcolm in the Middle on Netflix.

Today I bought more ornaments to make it even more festive. (Finally bought a star too >.> Since I'd forgotten I didn't have one until Silvia pointed it out while we were decorating).
Presents are coming in, so I'll be wrapping that soon, and my brother is here until Sunday. So we're okay. I'm okay. Still not done hurting and being angry, but I'm sure I'll get past it. I have people who help me move forward. (I know, that's a really cheesy thing to write but it's the holiday season. I am a living, breathing Hallmark card).

On to the challenge question! A bit late but I was asleep for most of today >_>

Week 29: Family

I just wanna say real quick that, while writing this, I realized there were two ways of doing this: the truly Hispanic way or the truly American way.

In the Hispanic way, I'd have to include everyone who has ever shared a genetic lineage with me. All ten million thousand cousins and aunts and uncles and grandparents and great-grandparents and whoever else I could think of--but that might end up being a little overwhelming.

The American way is no less overwhelming depending on the person, but it's something I've noticed. Is it me, or do people in America consider close friends to be like family a lot of the time? I swear, it's a pattern I've noticed. Which I think is very cute. Between including cousins who were once very dear to me but whom I don't talk to anymore and including friends who I've known for years and still speak with and love very much, I'd choose the latter.

But we'll keep this simple for the sake of brevity.

Which is actually quite a feat even when I'm trying to narrow it down to just a few people. My mother, my father, my brother.

How do I write about them when I've known them my whole life? How do I truly discuss them here without giving off the wrong impression--which is inevitable when all I can do is provide a glimpse at their characters. Oversimplifications are inevitable. As are misinterpretations. After all, they're some of the closest people to me. I am deeply biased when it comes to them.

I thought of a way to do it.

First, my parents.
This is a very old picture of them--they were just in college,
Here they're near my current age. Nineteen or twenty.
My Mother

When I was younger--about eleven or so--there was no one I admired more than Elizabeth Bennet, the heroine of Pride and Prejudice. I used to hope for the day someone would say that I too had a lively, playful disposition which delighted in anything ridiculous.

Back then, I realized that my mother was a lot like Elizabeth Bennet. And when I told her, I'd meant it as the highest of compliments.

This was my logic: Young, well-read girl born to a family that doesn't appreciate her smarts. A family that believes she'll push away men forever and never accomplish anything because she spends her days with a book in her hands. A girl who argues with people--people who find convoluted reasons to look down on her--and who clings and protects her dearest, beautiful sister while also looking out for her youngest siblings, even if she can't necessarily relate to them all that well. A girl who always has an opinion, who you can't tell to pipe down.

I'd meant it as a compliment back then. I also realized--years later, when I understood my mother and Lizzy a little more--I'd also meant it as an insult. Because to have a great, timeless character, you don't just focus on the good. You have to focus on the flaws. And in some ways--the big, significant ways--I must admit that my mother and Lizzy Bennet share very large flaws.

But to be fair, that's what makes people memorable, and it's what lets them change and adjust. For all those flaws, my mom's a very strong person. Probably among the strongest people I know. I don't always agree with her but I'm very opinionated about my disagreements. And that's because of how she raised me. I saw her and I modeled parts of myself after her--and even if it can lead to a great deal of conflict, I wouldn't want to be anyone else. And I wouldn't want her to be any different.

My Father

I was hoping I'd have a literary character for each one of my family members, but I'm afraid no one really sprung to mind when it came to my father. He's an overthinker, sweet but very hesitant. He gives people the benefit of the doubt, but at times can be a touch judgmental too quickly. Which, to be fair, is a problem most people have. The good thing is that my father is surprisingly open to change. He admits to his mistakes or his errors and finds ways to grow from them.

I used to think he was the exact opposite of my mother, but though their temperament varies, they're really alike in a lot of ways. They try and gauge what people are thinking and how they're behaving. I think the difference is that my father tends to be a touch more introspective, and can be a bit hard on himself.

Like my mother, he's always encouraged me. A lot more than I deserve, probably. I'm a very lucky person because of that--I never had parents who told me my writing would lead nowhere or who thought I was wasting my time with my hobbies and passions. Again, they're not perfect, but they've done their best with what they've had.

And The Holy Ghost JK-

That Kid.

Ah yes. My brother.

Pictured here with his beloved apple cider.

And here flexing.

I don't really know what I can say about him that I haven't already. He's really pretty awesome, though it took me a couple of years to realize as such. (Better late than never??) We're so close in age and so close in life experiences that it makes it easy for us to relate to our problems and plights--though we never forget that I am the eldest and him the youngest.

I do hope we'll always be close, even if we end up moving around the country or becoming busy with life or something.  It's difficult for me to really describe him despite the fact that he's the one person in the world I know the most.

Or maybe that's why it's so difficult. I know him so well it feels impossible to just turn up three or five sentences that describe him properly. He's a good guy--really funny, the definition of being carefree, a lot smarter and observant than you probably think, and seriously talented at video games.

They're all good people, actually. Like I said, I'm very lucky in that regard.

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