If anybody ever tells you that living in a family is easy, you just go on and slap them because they deserve it for spewing that ridiculousness. Living in a family is one of the hardest and best things that will ever happen to a person. It can feel like a certified three ring circus. It’s like the deep fried version of My Big Fat Greek Wedding. There are crazy times. Like when you are 16 and talking on the phone to your first boyfriend in the closet because privacy doesn’t exist in a house with so many people, and there seems to be an echo when you talk. So you start looking around and realize that your little brother has put a microphone in a shoe and is broadcasting your convo to the entire household. (True Story) Or when you wake up with your six year Old cousin’s little stinky foot in your nose and her impossibly-tiny-big eyed- evil-Chihuahua is snarling at you from your pillow where he now sits. (Also a true story) There are sad times-like when somebody gets dumped and needs a chick flick-some chocolate-and new pajamas or a family member passes away and we all need to cry and laugh and remember. Then there are the times when you want to strangle someone, like when you need to get a bath but that one family member uses up every bit of the hot water in the 80 gallon yes, 80 gallon, tank. Even though she only weighs 102 dripping wet. What is she washing anyway?!-Her soul? Or when someone washes your best sweater with their hunting clothes so it comes out smelling like the “dirt” scented laundry soap and your walking around smelling like a giant pile of leaves. (How could this stuff be made up?) There are the embarrassing times like when the family informs your boyfriend about how much of a slob you are or your cousin tells the entire Church softball team that you hang your bra from the ceiling fan (it wasn’t the fan...please...it was the treadmill for crying out loud) or your sister gets in a fight with an Aunt at your Great Grandfathers funeral about the middle east. There’s the continual fight over the washing machine, the last can of tuna, the bathroom, and the TV. A thousand people come in and out all day long. The refrigerator door is on an endless swing and there is never enough ketchup. Sometimes there isn’t a room in the house that doesn’t have somebody occupying it in some capacity. Everybody is in each other’s business and yet no-one seems to remember anything and only a metal concert can come close to the noise levels. No one does anything the same and you can’t ever find your clothes/purse/keys/shoes/etc and you can forget privacy. No one knocks and that one person is always naked. But on the flip side, you are never bored. When you’re sad there are people to talk to. Laugh with. Eat with. Living in a family is hard. Everybody from the baby to the grandparent is growing up in some way and it’s an ever evolving process of trying to make sure everyone feels respected, loved, and important. It’s a heck of a ride, this life. And at the end of the day your family is still your family- no matter if their bald, skinny, loud, clumsy, childlike, zany or crazy. They come in all sorts of packages with all sorts of ideas and problems but love puts on her big girl pants and moves over to include them all because...quiet simply....life would suck without them.