We are all family.

A beautiful thing – no – a beautiful display happened  today as I spoke to a Somali woman at the healthcare facility where I work.

This woman’s daughter informed me that her friends brother had passed away.

“Cancer”, her mother said, “only 27 years old!”

I asked her mother if her friend had family in the area. Her response:

“We are all family.”

Then she says it again and points to me and others around:

“We are all family. You, me, all of us.”

It made me smile from the inside out that she feels I am family. I, too, feel she and her family are my family as I probably spend more time with my patients than I do my own parents and siblings.

This Somali woman and I have had many conversations through her time at our office. Those that know me know that I am a curious person. I mean no harm in my questions, I just want to know her story.
My story is quite normal, I think. She has seen things that most never will. Lived through so much, abandoning her family to save her daughter and get her the medical treatment she needs. Without the care her daughter has and continues to receive, she wouldn’t be here today.

I have heard this story countless times from refugees. They are a proud group of people that don’t want our system to swaddle them. Yes! They do need help to get their feet on the ground and get going. They literally have left all that they know in terror and fear.

Where is the human compassion for those that have lived through this? Why so much disdain? I simply do not understand.

I have made the simple choice to not live in fear but to educate myself.

Many of us have family that don’t agree with our choices of compassion and intentional education through interaction. However, the good Lord has a plan for each and every one of us. At the end of my life, I will answer to only One! What will I have to say for myself?

What will you have to say?

”We are all family. You, me, all of us.”

*Written by a member of the Central Minnesota community, serving in the field of healthcare.