Everyday I wake up at 6:15am and leave for work by 6:50. Then I come back home by 7:45pm (7pm if I’m lucky) to pack my lunch and clothes for the next day, talk to my boyfriend for an hour on the phone, and go to bed by 11pm. Next day, repeat. So you can imagine that on my mom’s birthday I forgot to pick up the cake after a long day with no breaks. I came home to my dad cussing me out in front of my mom and sister, saying that he doesn’t care that I’m working, that I should take my time reading my texts, and that I’m a stupid little…cue the list of angry names he continues to call me while he storms angrily away into his room. Moments like these stick to my memory, just because it’s easier to remember the bad than the good. Thanks to raving, my view on my family has changed for the better. My rave family has taught me valuable lessons that I can apply to my biological family.
My rave family taught me how to accept a person for who they are.
Everyone in my rave family brings so many different personalities to the table that at first it was hard to adjust to people I wasn’t used to being around. When I first started raving I was a shy girl who would keep to herself, scared of embarrassment. First meeting my rave family, I was surprised about how weird everyone was. But that was because I didn’t see the entire picture; all of these people were so comfortably close with one another that they looked passed the oddity and accepted who they wanted to be, even encouraged it. I was so inspired that I took on the challenge to try and accept new friends and experiences with open arms. Today, I feel great knowing that when I accept others into my life, I am accepted into theirs.
My rave family taught me the importance of understanding.
The first time I met a new person from my group of friends I judged them based on what I saw/heard from them. Once I got to talk to someone, I mean really talk, I saw that there was more to them than a pretty face or a weird quirk. They had a story to tell me: the meaning behind a certain personality quirk, how they got to where they are, the people who inspired them to change for the better. Each person have their own backgrounds and stories to share, making them unique.
I understand that even though people like my parents may be upset with me at times, there is probably something else that is bothering them and their only outlet is on me. The times that we fight over small things, they’re probably just tired after a long day at work and snap at the tiniest things gone wrong. I understand that my parent’s personalities make them who they are and I can’t change that, but rather accept them.
My rave family taught me how to place myself in others shoes.
You can’t really know what a person has been through unless you’ve experienced it yourself. Sometimes it’s harder to imagine yourself in that situation and think about how would you react. I hear gossip once in a while about others and can’t imagine how they manage to put a smile on their face and pretend everything is okay; but sometimes that’s the only option. Stepping into the world of raving has helped me to understand why people can be so loving and how to see the world through their eyes. My rave family has allowed for me to experience their world and to follow their lead.
I’ve started putting myself into my parents shoes and imagined all of the sacrifices that they’ve done for me: endless car rides to friends houses, wanting to go home to rest but instead having to clean the house, and countless other moments that I’ve taken for granted. I definitely couldn’t imagine doing half of what they do for my sisters and I. Instead of getting irritated and angry when my parents ask for a favor while I’m doing something that I think is “important”, I try to remind myself that they probably have a lot more on their plate and that I should help them out.
My rave family taught me to love myself
Before my rave family, I was lost; went through relationships like tissue, fought with my parents about going out too much and spending their money, and spent my time with people I thought were my friends. Once it felt like I hit rock bottom, I began to lose all hope in myself. The only thing that was keeping me motivated was doing well in school and graduating a semester early. Once I met my rave family at a pre-EDC party and at EDC, everything slowly turned around. Over time, I developed close friendships with people who opened my eyes. They helped me understand that life isn’t always so simple and easy, that normally people aren’t who they appear to be, and I shouldn’t be afraid to be who I wanted to be. It takes only one person to believe in you to start really believing in yourself too. And that’s when I began to love myself.
Don’t get me wrong I know my family loves me, but now I realize that they show it in a different way. My rave family says, “I love you” and gives each other bear hugs, my biological family does chores around the house and tries to spend quality time together. We care about the wellbeing of one another and actions speak louder than words. It may seem like we don’t care about one another when we walk around one another in silence on some days, but that’s just how my rave family is too; we’re so comfortable with one another that the silence is okay.
You would think that after 22 (almost 23) years that I would know my family, but sometimes it takes time and patience to really understand the deeper relationship. We’ve had our share of disagreements, but I now know that at the end of the day, they still love me and I wouldn’t have gotten to this point without my rave family. Rave families will be there when you want to rage, but if you’ve chosen the right people, they become more than a rave family; they become the family you wish you had.
So mom, dad, sisters, uncles, aunts, grandma, grandpa, and everyone else who might be reading this, raving isn’t so bad. I wouldn’t be the person I am today if it wasn’t for my rave family.
Show your rave family some love this week
Living life like a breeze in the Bay Area, sharing the love to my fellow ravers