Relationship Reflections

Positive Relationships in My Life

Relationships are one of the most crucial elements in a person's development. I know for me, the positive interactions with my parents, siblings, grandparents, and now my husband, have made me the person I am today. 

On April 9, 2011, I married my biggest supporter and best friend. He has been with me and stood by my side for 11 years and I am always grateful that he is in my life. Our relationship has made me a stronger person and better person.
Here with my Mom, one of the strongest women I know. When my father
passed away last June, I don't know where my sisters
and I would have been without her support.
"Family life is full of major and minor crises -- the ups and downs of health, success and failure in career, marriage, and divorce -- and all kinds of characters. It is tied to places and events and histories. With all of these felt details, life etches itself into memory and personality. It's difficult to imagine anything more nourishing to the soul."
-- Thomas Moore 
Here, from Left to Right: my sister-in-law, Katelyn, sister, Jenny,
sister, Kristen, sister, Ann, sister , Liz and best friend, Vickie
in the front (my husband of 7 months,  Joe)

My sisters will always be my support system, through good times and bad.
We have been through 3 deaths in our immediate family in 15 months and with their strength and support, I know it has helped all of us get through the grief process. 

My wonderful in-laws (Joe's immediate family).
My father-in-law and mother-in-law have also been
very supportive to me in the past year of so much sadness.
I know I have another loving and supportive family.

My grandfather or DziaDziu (Polish name) walked me down the aisle.
This was very important to me as he took care of me and my sisters as we
grew up. Since my father was no longer with us at the time of my Wedding, it
was only fitting that my father's father share this experience with me. He was one
of the most loving and giving persons I have ever known.
He left this world on September 12, 2011 and I will never forget his love.

Why are these relationships important?
Children that have secure relationships are more able to regulate their own emotions, learn through exploration and cope with difficulties when they arise. In my opinion, if it weren't for the relationships I have talked about, I would not be as successful as I have been throughout my life. I have always been supported by family and friends and have received encouragement to do what I want to achieve. Peer friendships such as those with my best friend, and now, my husband, are important for positive self-image and high self-esteem. All of my relationships have led me to respect all people for who they are and value those that I have left in my life. 

Challenges to Maintaining Relationships

1. Disagreements among family members  
     This can cause conflict between certain family members and forces people to "choose sides." 
     This can be difficult for a person to maintain strong, positive relationships when disagreement breaks apart a family. 

2. Friends may drift away or choose other friends causing a current friendship to dissolve.

3. Differences or changes in attitudes over time.

4. Losing contact with friends as people grow older, or even maintaining contact as time goes by. 

Special Characteristics that Create Partnerships

My best friend, Vickie and I have many things in common. We both went to school for education and serve children. Vickie serves children in a speech and language capacity, while I am general education, but it is both of our passion for education that makes our friendship turn into a great partnership of bouncing ideas back and forth. 

My husband and I also have many things in common that make a special partnership. Our similar values,
beliefs and culture make us a great match for each other and that is why we made the decision to marry. 

My relationships and their impact on my Career

I have always wanted to be a teacher, and I have always received tremendous support from my family. Now, I have my husband's support as I work to obtain my Masters in Early Childhood Studies. This has had a huge impact on my decision to stay in this field. I knew without getting a Masters, I would be limited in my choices of a position within Education. Achieving my Masters will be the greatest achievement and I know I will be learning how to support children in a developmentally appropriate manner. 
A great big thank you to my husband for all your support and dedication as I work
 full-time and complete schoolwork in the evenings.