Sunday, July 24, 2011

Family – So Much More Than What You’re Born Into

A Sunday morning conversation between me and my imaginary friend and main character, Lydia “Red” Talbot.

Kathy: It was interesting watching two families blend at the wedding yesterday.

Red: Blend? You mean crash into each other, don’t you?

Kathy: (laughing) I know what you mean, but this time they seemed to be blending. There were several cute kids there and that always brings people together.

Red: I still regret that Mac and I didn’t have kids. I would have a family now if we had.

Kathy: Red, you have a huge family! Seriously, your trailer park people and half the town of Nuggetville!

Red: That park full of crazies? And the other half of Nuggetville hates me!

Kathy: Okay, so there are a few challenges in the park, but what about Joe and Bob? (Red’s face goes a bit pink) And Judy? Evelyn? Donnie?

Red: Alright, alright, I give. They are my family and I love them all.

Kathy: And then there’s your actual family that you’re related to – Geez.

Red: Are you saying I was just feeling sorry for myself? Are you telling me to quit whining?

Kathy: I’d never tell you to quit whining. You’re so good at it. Mom always told me to do what I good at. But really, that’s one of the things I loved about writing your life. How you build a family out of the life around you. I think people do that all the time, but don’t really realize it.

Red: Yeah, you’re probably right. I can count on Joe and the others as much or more than my blood relatives.

Kathy: Sure you can. Maybe Family really means the people you love that love you back. Remember, Under The Tuscan Sun?

Red: (smirking) Another movie we’ve watched 3 million times.

Kathy: Well…she is a writer, after all. Anyway, the story is about recovering herself by gathering a family to her - a mishmosh of people she met and fell in love with because of who they were instead of because she was obligated through birth. That’s Family.

Red: Kind of like me! I get it. Okay, not having kids doesn’t make me family-less. Happy now?

Kathy: Yes, except for one other thing.

Red: What? What is it now?

Kathy: You could always adopt!

Red stares off into space, considering the possibility and I go back to writing the next adventure in her life. We’re a pair, aren’t we? Can literary characters be part of your family? Hmmm…


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