We’re going Off Topic today for Photo Friday here on November Sunflower. It happens, sometimes you just want to share a piece of your heart with everyone, right?
Growing up, my sister and I spent a lot of time with our cousins. We were basically a foursome for most of our childhood. However, kids get older and find different paths in life. We grew apart, for sure, but you never lose that bond you have with your most loved cousins.
My sister and I stayed on the East Coast to raise our families, and live our lives. Our cousins….they headed West. The first one to leave the Long Island nest was Justyn. He left to join the Marines, served his time, met an amazing woman and settled down in California. Life has thrown my cousin some gigantic lemons. He’s overcome more than any man should have to, and he’s done so with an amazingly positive outlook. Unfortunately, he can’t come back to New York too often, and due to recovering from chemo treatments, he won’t be able to come visit New York for a long time.
Fortunately, I put on my big girl panties and got on a plane this past February. The first time in 7 years. My fear of flying developed late in life, after having my kids. However, I was given an amazing chance to attend a fantastic conference out in Anaheim. My husband was great about it, said “Just do it. You’ll regret not doing it. Plus, you’ll be able to see your cousin.” The original plan was to bring everyone with me, but we couldn’t swing that kind of cash. I made the decision to go, and I’m so glad I did.
Yes, I loved attending the conference. I met the most amazing new friends. Solid people who I adore, and look forward to seeing again in Nashville in a year. The most amazing part of the whole trip was seeing my cousin, meeting his amazing wife in person, and getting to meet the most amazing little man they created! When I came out of LAX and finally saw my cousin……I just wanted to move the whole family out there. It felt like home. Anytime I could spend with the beautiful trio, I did. He was gracious enough to pick me up after work, and bring me around to his family. He allowed me to join in a beautiful family celebration they do every February, and it was amazing to be included.
Leaving California was unbelievably hard for me.
There are days, like today, I just feel this void. I want to be able to hang out with my family, but I can’t. I want to have my kids hanging out with their amazing cousins. We’re just too far away.
So today, I’m sharing a little bit of my heart with all of you. I miss my favorite West Coast boys today, and my beautiful West Coast girl (who got bangs, and looks great in them!)