Cousins: My First Friends

I came across this quote, “A cousin is a little bit of childhood that can never be lost.” For me this is very true.
girls on beach

Although I didn’t have any first cousins on my dad’s side of the family, I was very fortunate to be one of twelve on my mom’s side. We all lived relatively close to one another and so we grew up together. We are all still in contact with each other, though we are spread out from Southern Ontario to Calgary, Alberta.

My oldest cousin's wedding with the younger ones (three are missing from this picture).

My oldest cousin’s wedding in the early 80’s with the younger ones (three are missing from this picture).

When I think about my childhood, my cousins played a big role. We swam together in the summer, had fashion shows at grandma’s house, sleepovers with little sleep, tomato picking with our mothers, trips up North and to the zoo.

It didn’t matter really what we were doing, we were together. And the memories that we made those many years ago stick with us today. We tease one another (sometimes a little too much), recalling funny things we did or said as kids. Years and years of inside jokes.

Did we always get along? Oh, there were times when we misunderstood one another, but we learned to forgive and love. We didn’t walk away from each other, we stuck together.

Of all the things I value with my relationship with my cousins is a shared faith in Christ Jesus, knowing we can call on one another for encouragement and prayer during times of need.

Me with the cousin closest to me in age. Still friends in our 40's :)

Me with the cousin closest to me in age. Still friends in our 40’s.

The youngest of us is now in his mid-30’s and the oldest is just over 50. And our family continues to grow, embracing spouses and welcoming babies. It’s wonderful to see the connections are still there and seeing the friendships grow in the next generation.

My son with my cousin's son.

My son with my cousin’s son.

– Cherie

And for our readers, we have two cousins on this blog. Do you know who they are?


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10 responses to “Cousins: My First Friends”

  1. suzinjain says :

    It’s only because I came along four (and a half!) years later that I was not your first friend. 😉 I was just sharing with someone about how sharing a room with each other taught us a lot…especially good communication tactics!

    You’re right though…our cousins are a huge part of our childhood and still great friends today!

    • Cherie Gagnon says :

      Well, thank you for not stretching our age difference to 5 years – you must be in a generous mood today 😉 I was going to write about us and our room sharing…but I’ll leave that for another day…so beware! hehe.

      Thanks for commenting!

  2. Susan Mires says :

    Very sweet! Which one are you in the wedding picture?

  3. Jeanie Berg says :

    When I was very little we moved to the other end of the state from where most of my cousins lived so I really had very little close contact with them. Of course, we’d come back to visit Grandparents and usually see many of the cousins then, but each time we had to get reacquainted! I have MANY cousins. On my mother’s side we were in the oldest bunch and on my dad’s side we were in the youngest bunch. I only had two that were just my age and they were both boys!!!! Just doing a rough count I have 50 cousins. Hope I didn’t forget anyone!!

  4. Ian says :

    How lovely. The cousin-thing is something I’ve missed out on.My parents were never close with their siblings so we didn’t get to hang out much as kids.

  5. julane Hiebert says :

    I have such fond memories of cousins, as well. Until just recently, the girl cousins on my mother’s side got together every year for a ‘lunch’. At first we took turns hosting, then we figured out how much easier it was to meet somewhere for lunch and a loonngg visit around the table. But to put things in perspective…I’m the youngest of this bunch, and 2014 is my 74th year!! We just keep hoping one of us will have memory long enough to remind the others!!

  6. julane Hiebert says :

    Oh yeah–na, na, na, na, na-na!! I know who the cousins are!!

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