Friday, June 21, 2013

Random musings on relationships..and our connections to each other.

I recently had a discussion with a friend about relationships. We chatted about how some come and go, some stay for a long time, some wane but pick up exactly at the same spot, and some fall away without fanfare. I was trying to think of why some of us are relationship people and some are just not hard wired to be.

I am blessed with great relationships. I am thankful that at any time I can cry, laugh, hug or call for help to any number of people. Some are near and some are far. I have prayers and I have stayers, I have family close by and family scattered all over, but remaining in contact is important to me.  So this is where is gets do I understand people who relationships do not come easy?

This topic came up with my non relationship seeking husband. He has friends, he likes people, but he does not go out of his way to maintain relationships and most often requires his friends to call him up, more often than he calls them. He is happy and not lonely. I think they too are the same way. He has a few people that he wishes he could spend more time with but because of distance can't, he has people who just like him, pick up where they left off. He has no cyber friends. He couldn't imagine working in the retail sector, social service field, but he has a heart for people, especially the underdog.

So as I was examining differences in our people personality, mostly because I am always job seeking LOL, I saw an ad for a job in Human Resources for a local company. I considered why did I never go that path. I have gone some crazy routes in my job career.  Could that be something I would be good at? The answer was yes and no. Sure I am good at people, I actually don't like conflict, but I can do conflict resolution. I have a knack or a gut when it comes to reading people and their intentions or their spin. I tend to read into the eyes of a person, the unseen hurts, but also the thing that makes their heart sing. I am a part of a union, but I am not a great union person. So that could be a problem. I prefer to delegate and not micro manage, so I may be too independent to monitor people. I have good communication skills, and I can get to know people without ever meeting them face to face. Some of my BFF's I met  on line.  I concluded although I have tried many things that included not working with people, my vocation is best suited not as a  paper pusher, but a people person. So if I had skills to work with people why was I stumped on seeing relationships from another angle.

This is where the thread in my brain gets foggy..Am I trying to teach relationship morals and standards to a little that is completely different from me or way too much alike?

She loves to be around people, she loves having friends, she loves talking about relationships, but she struggles with the intimacy of relationships and the permanence of some and the "for a short time" of others. I cant imagine coming into understanding relationships from a kids view when I had history of being a caregiver for years of my sibling. I cant imagine using survival techniques and manipulation skills at six. I can't imagine why allowing people to love me would not be reciproical. These are the weights of the world on the little shoulders that we pray about constantly, we teach daily, and we work on coming at from a kid view.

Relationship in adoptive families is different. I never knew it but I am seeing it now. There is always another relationship, kind of like a middle man. It is the fact that DNA suggests many of personality traits. I see where my DNA came from at least weekly if not twice a week. Her DNA traits are somewhat a mystery. She has a bright mind and an incredible memory, so that is a gift. We have pictures and can see physical similarities. It is the understanding relationships that is a struggle, we know that underneath the tough exterior that others see is a beautiful kind gentle spirit who would give the shirt off her back to anyone that needed it. Underneath a guarded personality is a little person wanting to be loved and accepted. Underneath the "I am ok at looking different than my parents" is the questioning mind of beauty vs skin color, long hair in ponytails vs embracing heritage hairstyles. Underneath the wary eye of meeting new people and experiencing new things is the little exploration, I want to learn all about new things. Inside the kid with a fantastic set of questions of why and how. This is not just my little but littles that come into families that are already have been established and adopted as older children.

I liken it to  a new work place where you need to come and fit in and find your place. This is like joining a group and especially one that is going to talk about touchy feely stuff and you are supposed to open up, just because. This is like walking into a new classroom of kids when you are a teenager and you feel like everyone is evaluating you. It is tough place and our littles have done amazingly well. Do we ever stop working on relationships...nope. I have bigs and our relationships evole all the time. Some times they need me more, some times they are independent and do not want my input into decisions. Thankfully our bigs often ask for advice so hopefully we have done something right.

Relationships are hard, relationships are ambigious, relationships take work, relationships give and they take away, realtionships change, relationships come easy, relationships with family and friends blur. Some friends capture a place that can't be explained. Some friends have seen me at my worst and love me anyway. I am just one part of the relationships that make us a family.

We have 32 years between our oldest and  our youngest. We have grandchildren older than our littles. We are raising littles while our bigs are raising littles. We all value each other just the way we are. We all try to look for similarities and yet celebrate our differences. We all work trying to create a safe, loving, accepting family for two littles to find their place, while remembering we have family overseas now forever connected to our family. We will never forget how we became a family and that heaven sent us two daughters to love and care for, to teach and to grow. We just learn and live and from each other. What an amazing year we have had.

We are not defined by our circumstances of how we came together but defined by relationship...we are family...not all the same...not all different...just a mosaic of personalities that love each other unconditionally and for that I am one thankful, momma and wife.

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