The Sunday Salon: The Ties that Bind

by Rachel Baker on September 14, 2008

The Sunday Salon.comThis morning, as I sit outside at my parents home, which we have fondly dubbed the Resort because of the back deck and fabulous pool, great food and wonderful tender loving care provided by the ‘rents (short for parents), I can’t help but think about family and the ties that bind.

Its more than just sitting here by the pool, sipping my coffee and thinking about what I’m going to write about today. This morning when I checked my facebook account, I realized that some pretty important woman in my family are now on facebook – my sister and several of my cousins, all of which are pretty  inspirational in my life who live in other parts of the country.

Going Down South

The other part of this contemplation of family comes from finishing Bonnie J. Glover’s new novel ‘Going Down South‘. This is a story about three women – mothers and daughters.  This book is about secrets and resentments and acceptance and love.  Its about a similar past and the perceptions we have of our mothers and the decisions they made.  “Going Down South” is about growing up and growing wise, telling secrets long held close to your heart and finding peace and contentment.  Its about realizing that people love you and understand you more than you love and understand yourself.  Most importantly, what I got from ‘Going Down South‘ is we don’t fall that far from the proverbial tree!

(Interestingly, right after I typed this last line, I got a notification from a cousin I’ve never met.  I checked out her pictures, and couldn’t help but be astounded at how easy it is to see the family resemblance – Here’s to the ties that bind!)

I wonder about the choices people make (my family specifically, but generally, everyone I meet).  I wonder what led them to the decisions which took their lives in the directions they are,  and what decisions will change their paths in the future. Sometimes its our own individual stubbornness, though, that keeps people who love us at arms reach; its not the choices they made, but our own perception of those choices.

One of the best lines (and there are dozens) in ‘Going Down South‘ is:

But there was a coating of happiness that fit snugly around her heart from being with Birdie and Daisy…

Glover’s book caused a great deal of reflection on my relationships with each of my family members.  And the one thing that’s notable in each relationship is how I feel when I think about them, talk to them or get physically see them.  Those we love have a habit of habit of coating our hearts with happiness, whether they mean to or not.

I guess I am dedicating my first Sunday Salon to the ties that bind.  I want to thank Bonnie J. Glover for inspiring me on this great Sunday Morning and I hope I’ve inspired you a bit to think about and appreciate the men and women in your family.  Try to remember we don’t always know the true reasons for the decisions made by those we love.  I think its also important to remember, even though we may not understand each others choices, more often than not, its our family (biological and chosen) who will be there when we need a little extra to heal our saddened heart – it may be difficult at first, but when all is said and done,

Sometimes all a person needed was to be with somebody who made them laugh.   ~ Olivia Jean, “Going Down South” by Bonnie J. Glover.


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