Monday, November 20, 2006

The Gap in Generations

recently, not4nothin has been experiencing some family drama. this family drama has not been what's kept me from blogging. rather it is the incident that brought me back to blogging as i try to understand why people act and treat each other the way they do.

there is a well-known saying out there which states, 'you can pick your friends, but you can't pick your family.' as i grow older i have found that this saying could not be more true. it is astonishing to me just how much the memory section of our minds files away and flashes a person back to when certain incidents occur.

the short version of my family drama is basically this (and keep in mind i am referring to my grandparents' level of family as i am an only child)...7 siblings (6 of which are female), italian background, death, selfishness and manipulation. pretty much my family reflects a very bad version of 'the sopranos' not in looks but in actions.

as i approach 30, issues which were important to me even 5 years ago no longer are. things, people or situations which caused unnecessary drama are no longer tolerated. going out to 'be seen' is no longer an necessity. one could say that my priorities and the people i hold near and dear to my heart have changed. being involved in a relationship for over a year and a half now has made me realize that things aren't always about me. with age comes maturity and progression.

when i think back to my childhood (which was an average one) i remember a lot of family around. 20 people around the table for christmas eve dinner. there was always a lot of laughter and underlying (unspoken) feelings of resentment, manipulation and jealousy. of course at the time i did not see that. i was only a small child who was always reminded that 'children are to be seen and not heard.' it wasn't until i approached my 20s and looked back at certain memories did i realize that the latter feelings actually rose above the laughter. and the laughter was a mask for those feelings of resentment, manipulation and jealousy. the extended family eventually disappeared and the cause was 7 siblings (6 of which are female), italian background, death, selfishness and manipulation.

having family around up until the age of 12 and then having that vanish leaves an unmistakable impression on a person. and to witness the way siblings treat and act toward one another is astonishing. i had decided a long time ago that the people who were at the root of these actions were no longer important to me. in a way, they were no longer family to me as far as i was, and still am, concerned. what continues to blow my mind is that with age some peoples' character, attitude and actions never mature. a persons' outer shell can change but the inside, where the root of resentment, manipulation and jealousy lie, can still stay the same.

in a world which has changed drastically since the days when i was 12 it amazes me that some people, especially siblings, can remain the same. and treat each other the same way. i guess the only encouragment i can take away from all of my current family drama is that it remains on the senior level of my relatives. it has not trickled down to my dad's generation of relatives. and it definately has not trickled down to my level. learning, recognizing and accepting people for who and what they truly are can help avoid the drama and the actions which come out of the drama. not considering them family can help also. :)


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