The Importance of Knowing Your Family Story

By Olivia Gardner, Regular ContributorNovember 9, 2015


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When I went to Florida last week, I finally got to meet my Dad’s side of the family. We went to my cousins’ house and stayed the whole afternoon just talking and catching up with each other. I learned so much about my family that I didn’t know, and it got me thinking about the impact family has on us.

Family shapes us into who we are, either because of good or bad circumstances.

Family teaches lessons. Family is there for advice and support. Family is family. My dad and his sister grew up raising their siblings because of an absent and abusive father. So, this summer I listened to them tell stories about their childhood and why they are the way they are, and it’s incredible.

My dad always says that the only thing he took from his father was that he didn’t want to be like him. On the other hand, my aunt said that she is the way she is because she took what she had and learned from it. My aunt is someone I could listen to for hours. She is full of wisdom, because of what she’s gone through. I took so much from her that day. The experience taught her so much, and she left me with these words: “I don’t dress for my husband, I dress for me” and “I don’t need you to tell me you love me, because I love myself.”

Always make sure you have a woman you can turn to for support and comfort.

We all need someone every once in awhile who will just sit and listen to us and offer their advice or simply to be there for you. Have a shoulder to lean, but also be a shoulder to lean on. We are women in a world full of daily bombardments of what we need to do and look like, so have someone that will remind you that you are beautiful and worthy as you are, just like my aunt did for me.

I am grateful we finally met them, because now I have even more women to turn to. In just those few hours, I learned so much about where I came from and the strong women in my family, and I think I learned why I am the way I am.

Let's chat!

What women in your family support you? Who do you rely on? Who has impacted you? Tell us below!

About Olivia

OLIVIA_GARDNER_writer_bio.jpgOlivia is a senior in high school from Colorado. She's involved with cross-country and is one of the captains for the girls' team. Sci-Tech also plays a big role in her life. She enjoys doing puzzles, yoga, and finding inspiring stories anywhere about people making the world a better place. She finds peace in cooking and baking because she can just satisfy her taste buds. She's always up for the moments when she can just blast some music and dance and sing with no cares or worries in the world. She loves life and loves the moments when she is able to relax and enjoy it for a little bit. Her blog about life and inspirations is


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