Hate is a strong word. I hate country music. So who else can get me to a Darius Rucker concert....family.....and that's about it.
I can count on two hands the times I've seen my cousins (Kimberly and Allison, pictured above). We've lived quite different lives, have contrasting interests and beliefs, and yet none of that ever seems to matter. The overriding force has always been love. It's never forced, it's as natural as a child's smile.
I've wondered why. Is it something genetic, a deep acknowledgement of kinship? Maybe. I'd say it's a bond that was more actively forged, a love passed down through generations. It's a gift given from their parents, and mine. I know my mother cared deeply for her nieces. She shopped for them on birthdays and Christmas like they were her daughters (she wanted one of her own, but got twin boys!). Though gifts may have been small, they were filled with thought, and love. Their folks have always loved us boys as their own, and even to this day, after my mother has passed on and we've become grown men, I still feel their presence and support.
So here's to family, and passing down it's gift of love and support. Time and distance are false barriers we build, let them fall. Who knows, you may even learn to appreciate country music along the way.