“3a: a group of people united by certain convictions or a common affiliation: FELLOWSHIP” - Merriam-Webster Dictionary
Family has been on my mind a lot recently. I have been trying my best to pick out every moment when "family" bubbles forward amidst everything else going on, to mash-up and feel through the folds of my mind.
Earlier this month, my former a cappella group, the infamous Middlebury College Bobolinks, came to New York City for their fall tour. That rainy Monday night, I sat in those very straight pews at a Brooklyn Heights cathedral, next to Bobolinks-past, gleaming a smile wide enough to reach faraway lands and bright enough to blind the darkest places of your mind. It was a mixture of seeing the Freshmen from my Senior year being the leaders, still knowing backgrounds to songs, and seeing a whole new group with other stories where I once stood.
I am able to proudly state that I am a Bobolink-Super Fan. Maybe it has something to do with this feeling that I took advantage of this family at Middlebury; the Bobos were always the ones I was ditching for whatever else was happening. Yet, they never let me go, and I couldn’t be more grateful.
As I joined their post-concert festivities, I worried that I would be sent to outskirts. I was obviously going to be unable to keep up with all the newness, all the changes that occur when unfamiliar members come in semester after semester. And there I sat, amongst the same Bobolink family from my own college years. The group seemed to barely have changed, and I only really knew 25% of the current members. I was shocked, but didn’t think about it too much and enjoyed the escape the Bobos provided for my evening.
The good things will never change in a family. That’s what I saw here.
After every theatre experience, it almost seems custom to tell everyone in the process, “Now, don’t you become a stranger! We MUST hang out and keep in touch when we’re back in the city.”
Well, that just doesn’t happen.
But with CLOC, it has been different. My NYC-CLOC family has been by far the most supportive group. They’re just always there; it’s almost like I can’t get rid of them. Are they following me? I mean, we never have to catch up because we see each other so often...
All joking aside, it’s mind-boggling that we could affectively bring our experience of our summer, being together 24/7, back to this city of cancelled coffee dates, unclearly busy work schedules, and passing moments of connection.
Then there are those few CLOC-adoon-ers away from the city who continue to be present in my ever-awakening experiences here. Those special individuals that support from away, giving me strength like none other. It’s hard to believe how someone from hours away can be the one who gives the most clarity to the hardest of situations at hand. I can’t understand how it’s possible, yet it continues. So I stop questioning and start thanking.
Simply be there for everyone in your family; always be taking more time to appreciate everyone’s talents and moments. That’s what I’m seeing here.
Everyone has their own definition of family. Mine will continue to evolve, and I look forward to each stepping stone upward.