Ever notice how, as we go forward in life, that we sort of pick up “little families” along the way? No, I don’t mean multiple wives and husbands; I mean our friends that share similar interests with us. It could be a book club, a sewing circle, writers, artists, glass blowers, chefs, hikers, bikers, friends, and so on. We sort of become family together from our interests and hobbies; or as I like to say; “*ohana.”
For example, the Crankee Yankee and I belong to a wonderful group, the Bedford Boomers. It’s a group of people who love trains and love putting on train shows so people can see what a great hobby it is. Now while a lot of us older folks grew up with toy trains, it isn’t always something that kids these days follow. Of course, if their parents and grandparents enjoy trains, usually they do as well.
This club is full of remarkable and wonderful people. Over time, they have become a second family to me. We are of all ages, and some of the grandmas and grandpas bring their grandchildren to the shows and to the get-togethers we all enjoy. It’s a lovely and wonderful feeling to know that you have a group of people who are not only fun to be with, but are “heart to heart” friends.
My mother used to tell me one of her great secrets to living a full and beautiful life: “it’s wonderful to have friends your own age. But also remember to make friends with people younger than yourself. They have a lot to give and they make you feel younger as well.” Good point and well taken.
If your family is still intact, that’s wonderful. But if you find yourself alone in the world, remember that there are interesting, loving, kind and remarkable “ohana” people who can become family to you. What a gift!
*”Ohana” in Hawaii means ‘family;’ that is, people who are not blood relatives, but are dearly loved and accepted.