Finding Families of Choice
- June 15th, 2019
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In our last three posts, we focused on the theme of “self-parenting” under the premise that our mothers and fathers are only responsible for raising us in the earlier stages of our lives. As we grow (and hopefully mature!) as adults, that responsibility falls squarely on our shoulders.
In today’s post, we’re shifting that focus somewhat for the simple reason that even if we’re ultimately responsible for our individual selves, self-care is so much easier when we’re embedded in a network of caring others. Because let’s face it: Even if we’ve become experts in self-soothing by using yoga and meditation techniques, there are days when nothing beats just getting a warm and reassuring hug from a friend.
So in this post, we’re shifting our focus to the theme of “found families.” Found families refer to people with whom we forge deep and supportive bonds based not on biological ties, but on shared experiences and common values. As the opportunities and pressures of contemporary life pull us away from our families of origin, found families give us that sense of care, familiarity and regard that we would otherwise find missing.
The community at White Space Wellness itself functions as a found family—not just for its clients, but for its faculty and staff as well. Since 2012, Abbey and I have had students come up to us and tell us how the studio feels like their second home, and how the sense of home remains even if they’ve been absent or abroad for months or years.
And that acknowledgment, for me, is the true measure of the studio’s success. To be able to provide a place where people can feel safe and seen, where they can find refuge or rest, and where they can forge deep and life-long bonds is an accomplishment that goes far beyond just running a business. For myself personally, I know I wouldn’t have survived running this business if not for the family I found in the studio—if not for the close circle of students-turned-friends with whom Abbey and I spent countless hours of silly laughter over cups of coffee or glasses of wine.
So for the rest of this month, we invite you to get present to the found families in your life and to find ways to celebrate these “families of choice.”
May you experience delight, gratitude and joy as you honor your found families this June!
P.S. Given how insanely busy contemporary life gets, it can be a real challenge to stay deeply connected to our many families of choice. If you need any tips in this arena, just click here!
Photo courtesy of Tyler Nix.