5 years

Seeing the family drift apart bit by bit when you’re gone really breaks my heart.

CNY this year feels really different to me, and I can’t believe it’s already been 5 years since my grandma passed away. The family seems to be growing smaller and smaller every CNY, because so many people are caught up with their busy lives, their other relatives and friends and their busy schedules. I’ve really been blessed for all the years before this because I got a chance to experience the true warmth of a big family, laughter heard all around the house and everyone wishing each other well. But this year I’ve really come to realise that people sometimes forget the meaning of being a family together in the first place. Our fundamental beliefs of togetherness are doubted because of our busy lives. Children play with their DS, iPod, handphone etc and nobody cares to have a proper conversation anymore. It really saddens me but in a weird kind of way. Like more of a realization more than anything. When my grandmother was around the family was really a lot more together than now, now sisters and quarrelling, people don’t turn to their family anymore for help, and it really makes me wonder where did all that we have go?

And looking at all the tweets about others being bored at their relatives’ house really only goes to show how much time we actually take to get to know our relatives and make an effort to talk to them. We’re put in a family for a reason, not to just be a member of that family who’s easily overlooked and overlooks people, but to really be a salt and light, and to really shower love and concern to the other family members, take some time to know them better and not just go through the notion of paying visits to each others houses, collecting red packets and wishing to leave the moment you get there. I’ve been there before, being miserable about going to some relative’s house that you don’t even talk to normally, why should we have anything to talk about during Chinese New Year anyway? And some of us might not like our relative’s behaviour/ attitude but we just have to accept them for who they are, don’t we? I used to dislike my father’s side of the family a lot, because compared to my maternal relatives they were a lot more ‘boring’ to me, and didn’t really joke much and stuff. When we meet up for dinners and stuff I would be quiet and would play with my phone or sth. But I’ve realised now that after meeting them every week that they are such a fun bunch of people to be with, and as much as my uncle’s behaviour used to put me off in the past, I realised that we are, after all, part of one big family and sometimes, family’s really all you’ve got. Now, even though my maternal side of the family is beginning to disappoint me, I’m becoming closer to my paternal relatives and I’m so thankful to God for that.

CNY really isn’t about the goodies, about the red packets, or about the celebrations. It’s really about the family, the togetherness and the love that we share. I just had this urge to type this here and I’m still contemplating if I should make this private or not, because I know not many people come here anyway. So if you do by any chance, I hope you find meaning in what I just typed. God bless you & I really hope you cherish what you have :)

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