This month marks the sixth month of me moving out of my family’s home. It’s fantastic to be out of my hometown and so close to my school, work, and friends. Additionally, having that bit of distance from my crazy six-person family has been great; they were driving me absolutely nuts right before I moved out.
It’s been a dream not waking up at the wee hours of the morning to the sound of my younger brothers screaming at their video games or singing Nirvana songs loudly on guitar—teenagers, am I right? Now though, I miss the hell out of those little bastards.
It’s funny, the things I often chastised them for while living at home are now the very reasons why I miss them so much now: the messes they made, how loud and obnoxious they could be, and their stubbornness. I’ve come to realize after living with a roommate that I am just as messy, obnoxious, and stubborn. As mad as they made me when I lived with them, I am a product of my family. We have been through a lot of change together—they understand me best.
A few years back when I had vastly contrasting political opinions to my family, I fully hated them. When I lived at home, I would always stay in my room only to come out for food. I detested the thought of talking to them because they would always say something that I thought was offensive, and I would always turn it into an argument. Since they had opinions that differed from mine, I felt justified in labeling them as toxic human beings and vowed to never see any of them again after I moved out. Looking back on that, I want to slap my younger self for thinking it—but I guess we’ve all had that thought. I wish I could hang out and play football with my family more, play guitar with my brothers while appreciating their goofy obnoxious jokes, and listen to their constant hollering and to be annoyed by them again to the point of screaming. The thought of not seeing them as often now is beyond depressing, but I needed that distance to realize how much I miss and appreciate them.
With Thanksgiving coming up, I think a reminder of the importance of family is fitting. At the risk of sounding like a cliché, they will always be there for you to listen, or even to make you laugh. If you still live with your family, they may irritate the piss out of you constantly—but they are your family. As much as you probably don’t want to admit it now, you’re going to miss them when you move away. They won’t be around forever, so appreciate them while you can.