Using the analogy of a rose seed, I’ll have to say I was extremely lucky to grow in the best soil possible, that being my family. During my growth, my family has provided me with all the “nutrients” I could ever need in order to reach my potential; unconditional love, support, and motivation.
In memory of my grandfather, who passed away early this morning, I’d like to share how my huge, crazy, loving family has influenced me.
In my opinion, big families are the best! Both my parents come from big families who are very close and they have instilled the love of family into my siblings and me. I have often said that I don’t know what I would do without my siblings and it really is true. We have so many differences but no matter what has happened in our lives we always have each other’s back and come together to overcome any situation.
In the most difficult times like today, I am reminded that I am so blessed. My grandpa passed away with his wife of almost 70 years and 10 of his 12 children at his side, the other two were able to say goodbye via video call. His legacy will always be the love that the whole family has for each other (all 12 kids, 32 grandkids, 26 great-grandkids, and 1 great-great-grandkid). While it is always hard to say goodbye to a loved one, our family is comforted knowing that we took advantage of the time we had him with us.
Of course my family loves parties and we don’t need any excuse to have them, but one of coolest things about cousins’ Quinceañeras (15th birthday party) or weddings was always taking those pictures in which our grandparents were surrounded by all 12 of their kids while all the cousins admired how strong that family bond was and pledged to keep it alive. Last year we even threw a 15th birthday party for my niece (over a year early) as an excuse for a family reunion. Grandpa had been dreaming about being at my niece’s Quinceañera since she was a toddler, the picture above is from that party!