When things go wrong as they do, the saying goes that blood is thicker than water. I’m a firm believer in the idea that we make families of the people that we choose to allow in our hearts and keep them there. However, I’m really close to my mom and sister, who are my whole immediate family pre-marriage, and I couldn’t wait to go to Illinois to see them last weekend.

As expected, seeing my family had a calming, cathartic effect on me. It has taken many years for home trips not to stress me out, but my relationships there are finally where I feel like they need to be and I could have stayed much longer this go around. Sometimes you just want your mommy and your sissy. I think the whole trip can be summed up in these three pictures.