On Communities and Families

Warning: This will dive into personal areas of my life.

Grief pulls communities together. I never truly realized it before, but families are communities. Some more than others, granted, but if you are lucky, a family is a true community. I never considered my family to be much of a community, but this past holiday season changed that.

In December of 2005, right after Christmas, my grandmother went into the hospital and died days later. This past holiday season certainly had the makings to be quite depressing. Oddly enough, it wasn’t. I would have thought that losing the “glue” that seemed to hold our family together would have tore us apart. It did something surprising that I probably should have expected. We came together more than ever before in our mutual grief. Mostly we came together for my grandfather, to cheer him up, to keep him company, and to make him laugh. Frequently we would be in conversations with one another, laughing and joking, when those laughs would turn to tears. When someone felt down, the others would go to cheer them up and make sure they were doing alright. A true community. I’ve never felt closer to my family than I do now.

A community is family. To survive, a community is a must. Ben talks about the importance of communities frequently. While I’ve always agreed with him on this subject I never realized firsthand how important a community can be. For me, it helps to survive grief. While a community does much more than that, for myself, it is enough for the moment.

– Miranda Vivian


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