Sunday, September 13, 2009

Family Resemblances

I went to a memorial service for my Uncle Gig this past Friday. He was my mother's brother and the last of their immediate family to pass on. He was 92 and lived a life that anyone would be proud of . He was married to my Aunt Ginny for a few weeks shy of 67 years, raised 3 wonderful children, had grandchildren, great grandchildren and was loved dearly. It is sad to say goodbye but this is, I think, the kind of circumstances most of us hope for when we leave this world.

After the service there was a luncheon and I was happy to spend time with my aunt and cousins, many of whom I hadn't seen in a couple of decades. I couldn't help but see family resemblances every where I turned. Talking to my cousin Pam, I noticed how much she looks like our grandmother. I could clearly see our grandfather in my cousin Gary. My cousin Gail's grown daughter looks so much like her and her son is the image of his dad, Bruce, who we lost much too young.

I came to my family by adoption so I don't look like any of them. That is okay with me. I don't need to look like them, they are my family. I belong to them and they belong to me. I know we do not need to look alike to be a family. That being said, I loved seeing the resemblances in them. I especially took pleasure in seeing the loved ones we have lost in the faces of my family. To look at a cousin and see my much loved grandmother brings me comfort.

My sister Candace is our parents biological child and the older we get the more she looks like both of them. It makes me want to hug her even tighter when I see her. I love seeing them in her.

I wonder if my sons will feel the same way when Kurt and I are gone. Will they look at their sisters and see us? Will it comfort them? I hope so.


  1. Sorry for your loss Alison. Your sentiments are beautiful. I see you and Kurt in your daughters now...I imagine your sons will see the same.

  2. Strangely, though, I sometimes see adopted kids and think they DO look like their parents! There's a blog I read and the mum has an adopted girl who is part African American, part Native American and part white (I think). The rest of the family are white or African or one African American. I think this tri-racial (is that a term??) kid looks heaps like her siblings and parents! Not in skin colour but eyes etc. Obviously the SHAPE of facial features can't change, but I think with mannerisms etc, adopted kids so often do look similar.
    But what do I know? I don't even have kids.