In the past couple weeks I've been thinking a lot about family. This is reasonable, considering we are in the season of holidays that, for many people, is so centered on family. For pretty much my whole life the months of November and December are full of family togetherness. We travel from the various corners of the country and when we are all finally together it usually ends up with us belting out "I Believe I Can Fly" wearing blonde wigs and drinking whiskey... or some variation of this. So needless to say, it was very strange when Thanksgiving rolled around to see a photo on Facebook of my three siblings sitting in front of the fireplace and I wasn't there!
This is not my first holiday season away from my family. This will be my first Christmas away, but I've missed Thanksgiving before. It's always been hard, but what it's taught me is that family is really the same thing as community. And if you have a community, you have a family.
At Thanksgiving, my fellow YASCer Becky came to visit and we cooked enough food to feed about 20 people. Seriously. I had to freeze leftovers. We ended up having 6 people and it was truly better than I could have hoped. And I was with my Honduran community. My family.
I will have the pleasure of spending Christmas in Tela with Becky, and my family will come for the new year and I'm sure there will be no end to the singing and being ridiculous. But through this holiday season I've come to understand that I have family all over the world. And I'm incredibly lucky for this, because every time a member of my community goes somewhere new and begins to create their own community in this new place, we extend our family even further. So, my dear friends, what I would like to say today is that you never have to be without family. I love you all.