My friends and I have formed out own community. At the very center, there is me, Hannah, Alex, Coleman, and Dustin. Alex, Coleman, Dustin, and me grew up together, I’ve known the three of them since I was 5. Then Hannah joined us around the tie of our senior year of high school. On top of us we have brought many other people in as well. Alex has included his girlfriend Destiny by having her live with them. Their roommate Christian has been added to our community because he moved in with them as well. On top of Christian is his younger brother Jameson, however he got added to the group not through Christian but by being Coleman’s friend first.
Then there’s also Arric, who we’ve all known since grade school, and Summer, his girlfriend, who don’t spend as much time with everyone but are close with Coleman and Alex and therefor are also in our small community. One of my good friends Amy has also been added to our community recently due to the fact that she’s reconnecting with us all from when we were in middle school.
Honestly, if I went back in time to my high school self, maybe around sophomore or junior year, when I felt my loneliest, and told me that I’d have such a large group of people I associate with, I’d think you were crazy. Not that these are my only friends, but they are the ones that feel closest to family to me. I spend most of my time with them and they are who I go to when I need something positive in my life. When I’m with them, even though we’ve all found our ways into the group through various ways and people, I feel like I’m a part of a community.
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My family tree on my moms side is slightly messed up in the way that I call my cousins aunt and uncle because they’re so much older than me. My mom and her sister, my real aunt, are 13 years apart. Her oldest of three daughters, my cousin, is closer to my mom’s age than mine, and on top of that her three children are also older than me. My aunt’s second daughter has three children, the oldest of which is 5 years younger than me. I’m the awkward cousin with no one my age, except I’m not really the cousin, I’m the second cousin. On top of the extreme gap between my mom and her sister she waited until later in life to have children, which is another reason things are all mixed up.
Unfortunately all of them live in Texas so we only see them once a year and for a short time. We used to take trips to Disney about twice a year but with everyone getting older the idea of Disney sort of lost it’s magic. Now the youngest three are the only ones left that really want to go to Disney so when they come my mom and I don’t even pay for park passes and we just spend time with them at the hotel. It’s still worth it just to be able to spend some time with my cousins.
My dad’s side of the family is much easier to follow, sort of. My dad’s brother doesn’t have children so that keeps it nice and simple. However if you really want to get into the extended extended version of my dad’s family there’s more than I can count, name or think of. Every three years they have a huge family reunion, organized by the oldest women of the family, referred to as the aunts. There’s so many that they rent out an entire condo complex by the beach and I swear I never recognize anyone. Most of them keep in touch, I get a birthday card once a year from some of them. Which is fair since I don’t even know how I’m related to most of them. However I am one of the only ones in the family left with the original Sir name, even though I won’t be carrying it on. I guess it’s just a family tradition to have girls. I think my brother and two other cousins, who’s names I don’t even know, will be the only ones to carry on the name.
I may not be close with many of my extended family, but they are still family and in my experience, on either side of the family, if I ever needed something I wouldn’t be alone.
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