After work today, I rushed to see Chris’s aunt and uncle, who are spending their very last day in New York today. We met at the Shake Shack near Time Square so that we could have a quick bite together before I walked them over to the Minskoff Theatre to see The Lion King musical. Because of a work meeting that ran way over, I unfortunately only had about half an hour with them before we had to part, but it was a really enjoyable time. I presented them with half a loaf of the pumpkin cranberry walnut bread I made, and we discussed their time at the UN, Top of the Rock, and shopping in Herald Square. They were in high spirits the way they had been pretty much the entire time I have spent with them.
As I walked east after leaving them at the theatre, I thought about how I never feel as satisfied spending time with my own relatives. We can’t have the same types of conversations, and I can’t expect them to be as excited or happy about what any of them do. Being with my cousin and his wife this past Saturday wasn’t that enjoyable, nor was it as though we had much to talk about that meant anything to anyone; the enjoyable part was being able to see and play with their two-year-old son. The conversations I think I should be having with people who matter to me cannot be had with my relatives. I can’t even say what I think about New York City honestly around my own family without it completely being shot down or criticized.
But now, Chris’s family is part of my family. It’s still sinking in (and will probably continue to sink in) the same way it was still sinking in for the first month that the engagement ring on my finger was actually my engagement ring. It wasn’t on loan, and it wasn’t going to be given to someone else. This is mine now. And I’m blessed to have an extension of a family that is everything I’ve never had before.