The Holidays Are Perfectly Timed, Because Sometimes You Just Miss Your People

The Holidays Are Perfectly Timed, Because Sometimes You Just Miss Your People

"But missing them is more than missing the stuff we do together. It's missing this feeling of deep belonging and love."

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Very rarely in life do I actively miss my extended family. I see at least parts of them often enough that it's not super common for me to think "geez, I really miss being with those guys."

But this semester, I haven't seen really any of my extended family.

I didn't realize it until a friend of mine made an offhand comment that made me think of them. And then, all of a sudden, I missed them actively and acutely. I had this really intense longing to be in the comfort of my family and nothing I did could quite shake that feeling. It would go away for a little while and then a song would come on or I would smell something that reminded me of being with my fam and it would come back.

I should back up and say that I come from a HUGE extended family.

I have about 20 first cousins, so it's rare to have less than thirty at any family gathering. That being said, it's also really hard to get everyone (or even most of us) together at once. But when we do gather, it's a huge party. People from outside the family are really easily overwhelmed by the sheer number of us and by how loud and crazy we are. Every time I see that, I become that much more thankful to be a part of my family, to be "in" on the shenanigans.

But missing them is more than missing the stuff we do together.

It's missing this feeling of deep belonging and love. I know, I hear how cheesy that sounds, but it's true. I don't have to worry about whether or not they'll like me because they've seen me at my worst (I mean, come on, they knew me in middle school and still love me). There's a certain warmth and safety that comes from being surrounded by people who have known your for your entire life. I think of the times that I'm with my people as being a lot like the holidays for other people; there's just something that's a little warmer, a little happier, a little fuller, a little more than other times of the year. It's like that for me when I'm with my family, whether it's a holiday or not.

Now don't get me wrong, my family isn't this perfect unit that's always fun and loving and happy. We have our fair share of stress, annoyances, and differing opinions. But, I don't remember the last time that we let those truly get in the way of having a good time together. I guess it has something to do with the fact that we don't all see each other very often. Or maybe we're just weirdly close?

Sure, sometimes I get overwhelmed by all of the people and the noise and the chaos, but I also feel strangely at home in it. I mean, I've spent time with these people my entire life. For as long as I can remember, we've all been cramped into our grandmother's too small, too hot house, scrambling to get the best chairs or the best food or even just to pick on one another. Some of my happiest memories are of having an all-out marshmallow war in the living room and of having "cousins sleepovers" in the floor.

"My people" are the ones who've known me my whole life; they've not only shared in my highest and lowest moments, but they've lived them as some of their own. Some of my best memories have come from nothing more than being with them and letting things unfold. So to my people, thank you for being all that you are. See you soon!

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5 Perks Of Having A Long-Distance Best Friend

The best kind of long-distance relationship.
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Sometimes, people get annoyed when girls refer to multiple people as their "best friend," but they don't understand. We have different types of best friends. There's the going out together best friend, the see each other everyday best friend and the constant, low maintenance best friend.

While I'm lucky enough to have two out of the three at the same school as me, my "low maintenance" best friend goes to college six hours from Baton Rouge.

This type of friend is special because no matter how long you go without talking or seeing each other, you're always insanely close. Even though I miss her daily, having a long-distance best friend has its perks. Here are just a few of them...

1. Getting to see each other is a special event.

Sometimes when you see someone all the time, you take that person and their friendship for granted. When you don't get to see one of your favorite people very often, the times when you're together are truly appreciated.

2. You always have someone to give unbiased advice.

This person knows you best, but they probably don't know the people you're telling them about, so they can give you better advice than anyone else.

3. You always have someone to text and FaceTime.

While there may be hundreds of miles between you, they're also just a phone call away. You know they'll always be there for you even when they can't physically be there.

4. You can plan fun trips to visit each other.

When you can visit each other, you get to meet the people you've heard so much about and experience all the places they love. You get to have your own college experience and, sometimes, theirs, too.

5. You know they will always be a part of your life.

If you can survive going to school in different states, you've both proven that your friendship will last forever. You both care enough to make time for the other in the midst of exams, social events, and homework.

The long-distance best friend is a forever friend. While I wish I could see mine more, I wouldn't trade her for anything.

Cover Image Credit: Just For Laughs-Chicago

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14 Things You Relate To If You Grew Up WithOUT Any Cousins

*GASP* "What, you really don't have any cousins?"

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It always shocks every person who hears me state that I do not have any cousins. For some reason, this is just hard for people to really believe when it's actually not something impossible. I think we are all just so used to large families that it sounds weird when people say that they have no cousins. Yet, it is definitely a potential reality, and actually impossible if each of your parents is the only child to your grandparents.

Here are 14 things that you can relate to if you grew up without any cousins.

1. Nobody believes you when you say that you don't have any cousins

I'm serious, for the tenth time.

2. Your grandparents spoil you

With no other grandchildren to worry about, it's pretty easy to do.

3. You don't understand when people say that cousins are your first best friends

My best friend was my first best friend.

4. You and your siblings are always the youngest people at family events

This was simultaneosuly a good thing and a bad thing.

5. You get all of the attention at holidays

Since you're the youngest one around, then distant relatives are always doting over you.

6. Everything you do is deemed awesome by your extended family because there is nobody to compete with

It's much easier to be praised when you aren't being compared to someone similar to your age.

7. You don't know how to hold babies

You're never around them so why would you?

8. Family photos are pretty easy to coordinate

The less people, the easier.

9. Other family members spoil you just because 

Afterall, you are the only kid around...

10. The family will make comments regarding the potential for you to have a cousin as a justification for why they aren't doing something for you

When you hear, "I can't buy you too much because someday your aunt is going to have kids and I will have to do the same for them" you cringe and just had to know that all of the attention wouldn't last forever.

11. Birthdays are always a big deal

A perk of not having very many to remember.

12. If your parents' siblings own pets, then you refer to the animal as your cousin

Cat cousins, dog cousins, lizard cousins, and fish cousins can be pretty cool, actually.

13. Sometimes you dream of marrying into a big family

This is to ensure that your kids do grow up with cousins.

14. You appreciate the closeness of your tight-knit fam

Maybe the only thing you would miss if you had a big family is the opportunity to develop such close bonds with the few relatives that you do have.

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