When I was younger I would sit at my kitchen table and eat my cheerios before I got on the school bus. In an effort to kill time and because I had nothing better to do, I would look through the comics in the newspaper. One that I found particularly interesting and relatable, was The Family Circus written by Bil Keane. It is now written and colored by his own son, Jeff Keane. I liked it because it reminded me of the hum-drum and overwhelming days that I experienced in my own family. There were some conversations that the characters had that were all too real to me.
Here are some examples:
This is all too true for myself and my siblings. I have been in the hospital multiple times because I have two younger sisters, my siblings and I have been going to church since we were all born, and my mother works in a library and has been taking us all to libraries for years. As someone who is perpetually interrupting people and somehow ALWAYS needed my mom at the most inconvenient times (especially when she was on the phone)- this comic really spoke to me personally.
I also really loved this comic because even as a 20 year old college student, I still ask my mom questions like these. She somehow always knows the answer. Imagine that!
Family has always been of great value to me and as I have gotten older, I have seen just how powerful the family can be. My question to consider is why is this the case? Why do people gravitate towards the aspects of familial love? I believe it is because that is where our hearts are. It is what we ache for. It is what we need. When the family is broken, these questions are even more impertinent to answer. What I have learned personally, is that at the end of the day I want normalcy. No family is normal, and no family is perfect. However, what is normal is the chaos. What is normal is the day in and day out of what we all experience. What is normal is the connection between each member of the family. What is normal, in the midst of the crazy, is the love in the family.
While comics are not something I crave, or enjoy the same way I enjoy reading Jane Austen- I do enjoy finding connections between my own life and the characters on the newspaper I am reading in the morning while my mom makes coffee and gets my lunch ready.
The link above caters to the sentimentality of The Family Circus and why the ideas that Mr. Keane had all those years ago are still applicable to people who read his comics today.