It’s Time for the Family Reunions

Holidays equal family time and family time equals a little unwanted questioning. When unwanted questioning comes into the picture, so do the irrational opinions of the people who I haven’t seen in years. Then that makes me want to argue. Or blow my head off. Either way works.

However, it hasn’t been all shitty. This morning, before we all woke up, my cousins switched all the labels on our presents under the tree. It drove the adults crazy, but, honestly, I’ve been dreading these reunions every year that I’m forced to go to one so I laughed my head off. You have to admit it that it’s kind of funny. We ended up opening all the presents together and trying to guess which gift belonged to who. That and my ol’ cup of jo really helped make my morning all the more special.

The other thing that I really like about this day is the food. Since I was in France during Thanksgiving, my parents decided to make up for it by cooking a turkey on Christmas day. Bless everyone who agreed to this because I ate the best turkey leg I’ve ever had tonight. Amazing cranberry sauce and stuffing and sweet potatoes. Not to mention the perfect cheesecake to end the night on a sweet note.

But I’m not sure if it was enough to make up for the screaming of my little cousins and their feet stomping all over the house. The climbing and the shoving for absolutely no reason is something that I’m unfortunately not used to. The college life doesn’t really give that kind of scene unless there’s a bar and entirely too much alcohol, which I wish I had tonight. What really pissed me off though were the ensuing questions that everyone kept pressing on me.

You see, I expected to receive the question of “How was France during the Paris attacks?” But that proceeded into questions that my liberal mind could no longer handle. For those of you who aren’t liberal, you should at least know what it’s like to have someone argue against every moral fiber you believe in. I’m not a big fan of the saying that you can’t be friends with someone who doesn’t think the same way as you, because it’s not true. However, if a relationship is going to exist between two people, I think you need to at least be able to talk about your thoughts and opinions without being shut down within two seconds out of just spite. If you’re going to shut someone down, at least have some damn good reasons.

That’s the problem: where is the logic in half the things they were no-planssaying to me? You want to know what was going through my head the whole time? I wish I had actually said them, though, but they would’ve kicked me out of the house. And these aren’t just my political opinions, but rather just simple logic. It’s like family reunions happen to be an excuse to have a safe place to act stupid. Note that I’m not saying they are stupid, because they’re not. Honestly, I’m not with them all the time, so I wouldn’t really know, but some of the logic did not make any sense.

Them: “Do you think you’ll ever go back to France due to the Paris attacks?”

Me (Thought): “Have you thought about going to New York since the Twin Towers collapsed?”

Them: “Rachel started this new diet that requires her to go vegan. Smart girl.”

Me (Thought): “She made pasta with alfredo sauce to avoid putting meat in there…so healthy.”

Them: “Annie started a diet too. She eats no processed foods.”

Me (Thought): “Is she starving? Because everything is processed, my friend. Including veggies.”

Them: “Do you have a boyfriend? You really need a boyfriend.”

Me (Thought): “I’m actually in a long-distance relationship, because he lives in the future.”

Them: “Global warming doesn’t exist. It’s just a really hot winter.”

Me (Thought): “Crack a book.”

Them: “Refugees are ruining our country’s economy. This is our president’s fault.”

Me (Thought): “You’re talking to the daughter of an immigrant, bitch.”

Them: “That mall was so dangerous. It was filled with black people.”

Me (Thought): “…am I the only one with ears at this table?”

I need to one, gain some confidence, and two, get my own life so I can block out those who can’t feel my wrath of anger. I went to my room at 8:30pm to go to bed only to just sulk and watch Gilmore Girls in my bed.

These people keep saying they know me, but they don’t. I haven’t seen them in over a year, and they don’t know enough about me to say that I don’t have a boyfriend and that I don’t think in a certain way. When you’re around people who think differently than you, you need to be respectful of their thoughts – it’s called being aware. It’s the real reason why I didn’t shut these people down in an instant. Well, it’s partially because my parents told me that I’m stuck with them for the rest of my life or until I can support myself, so really I had no other choice.

But shouldn’t I have a choice? Why should I let people into my life who know absolutely nothing about me? Why should I have to give up precious vacation time to hang out with people who know nothing about me? Or pay for gifts for people who I really never see, so really don’t care that much about? What is so special about this? Nothing. Family isn’t genes: it’s care and devotion. And, frankly, I don’t really love the people who try to tell me what to do with my life without any consideration for what I do and what I want.

Sorry for that rant – maybe another Christmas will be a little less painful. But you have to admit, some of my experiences were funny. Well, funny, now that I look back at them.

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