The things you do for family

Last weekend, I left the big smoke and travelled to a small town down South. And when I say small town, I don’t mean Wellington, you cheeky born-and-bred Aucklanders. I mean small town as in gotta-catch-an-8-seater-plane-with-6-empty-seats-small. And yes, the flight was terrifyingly awesome. Some things you just don’t need to see when you’re suspended 17,000 ft in the air sans parachute; like those flashing red lights above the Captain’s head as she/he battles through storm cloud.

Some would say that the destination was terrifying as well, because most of the cafes down there aren’t open on Sundays. “But what about my salmon benedict with hollandaise on the side?” you ask. “You’ll need to catch that salmon yourself, fetch a few eggs from the chickens out back and hand whip whatever condiment ‘hollandaise’ is from your own sweat and urine”, would be the unsympathetic answer.

Anyway, the purpose of this mass migration down South was to celebrate a family milestone. This milestone was based around two perfect strangers who met, fell in love, had more than a few children and who have made their relationship work for far longer than I have even been alive. Can someone tag relationshipgoals?

While I was there, family being family, I naturally got a lot of sh*t for this public way in which I’ve decided to divulge my thoughts, feelings and general life. A few of my favourite sentiments went along the lines of ‘when are you going to start a Tuesday Hustle?’ ‘So you only have to do anything one day week?’ ‘Blogs must be a dork-land thing’ (classic kiwi rivalry).

I was also only referred to as ‘Lucy’ once during the whole evening. ‘Monday’, ‘Monday Hustle’, and ‘The Family Hustler’ are now affectionate labels I’ll never shake for as long as I exist. Actually, these will probably continue to haunt me when I’m gone. I can see my tombstone now.. ‘Here lies Lucy, aka, the Family Hustler who even in death, will continue to hustle on a Monday’.

Aside from the lashings of sh*t, there were also a few casual threats made. Many said that if I fail to write a blog post covering my outtakes from weekend, then they would extradite me from the family. So I thought to play it safe I had better write something about the crazy collection of humans that make up the tree I branch from. Or maybe I’m a leaf on that tree. My family is not small.

But the honest truth is, the moment that plane touched down, I knew that my next blog post would be about family. And no, it’s not because my birthday is a week from today and I might get a fresh pair of socks out of it. It’s because visiting family en masse is like reaffirming your very soul.

To my family – I salute you.

The idea of family is not just restricted to those with a direct blood line to you, either. Family, to me, is an umbrella for any person who accepts you for who you are and what you’re about. It’s for the people who encourage you endlessly, who have unwavering faith in you, who know what you are capable of even better than you do; but who, in the same breath, keep you realistic, grounded and forever grateful. Family are the people who will vote for you 1700 times every day for a week in the hopes that you’ll become the next What Now presenter; and who still, to this day, hold the belief that the system must have been rigged ’cause you weren’t picked.

This last weekend was so important, because it reminded me that family are the best people you’ll ever have the fortune to meet in your life. It reminded me that in the eyes of family, you will always be successful, you will always be accepted and most importantly it reminded me that regardless of occupation or accolade, in their eyes, you and you alone will always be so much more than enough.

So make sure you book that flight home for Christmas, hang out with your grandma with no agenda, make sure you prioritize family wherever possible. Because those are the moments, the memories, the occasions and the people that actually matter, whatever your hustle.

A more accurate title for this post would have been ‘The Things Family Do For You’ – because I tell ya, I wouldn’t be half the person I am without them. Today, I dedicate this blog post to the people who make sure I stay humble, I stay driven and to the people who give me enough sh*t to ensure that I always remember what’s most important in life. Today, I dedicate this blog post to the people who have shaped values, my ideas and my traditions, but who never fail to remind me that whatever happens, a warm bed, a good meal and a good old fashioned yarn is never far away. Thank you, my family, for embodying the very definition of unconditional love.

Now you’d better head out and buy me those socks.. 😉


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