Fam­ily Al­bum

Family Circle - - CONTENTS -

“Justin’s dad and I live in sep­a­rate homes but we’ve told Justin that no mat­ter what, we are a fam­ily. We’re ded­i­cated to each other and we love each other. We still have meals to­gether and we’re con­stantly in con­tact. We even have a text thread called ‘Fam­ily’ that’s just the three of us.” —TANYA Rob (Dad): I’m the good cop and Tanya’s the bad cop. Tanya: What? Rob: I’m a big kid at heart. I en­joy be­ing silly with him. You’re the one that comes in to lay down the law. Tanya: You can def­i­nitely put your foot down too, but you and Justin are re­ally con­nected in a broth­erly way. “Tanya’s very strong, very re­li­able and very at­ten­tive. I can’t say I’m al­ways on top of things, but I know she is.” —ROB

“My son’s birth­day has al­ways been spe­cial to me, so I go above and beyond. One year I took him and his friends to Six Flags. An­other year it was Grand Prix go-kart rac­ing. He’s 13 now, and I can’t wait un­til his 16th birth­day be­cause I’ve al­ready got that planned!” —ROB “When I came out of my last dance per­for­mance, I didn’t know if my mom or my dad was go­ing to be there. I was happy when I saw them to­gether. It made me feel like we’re al­ways, no mat­ter what, go­ing to be a fam­ily.” —JUSTIN “What’s dif­fer­ent from how my par­ents raised me is that I can say ‘I’m sorry’ when I screw up. I think that’s huge. Justin can see me as flawed and hum­ble. He can learn com­pas­sion.” —TA N YA Justin: I don’t know who I get my danc­ing skills from. Tanya: Re­ally? Are you try­ing to, like, not hurt his feel­ings? You get them from me! Rob: I don’t dance. That’s no se­cret. I have two moves. Tanya: Who does dance break­outs with you all the time in the apart­ment? Justin: OK, it’s you. “If we do ar­gue, it’s about Justin for­get­ting things all the time: his back­pack, his clar­inet when he has prac­tice that day, what he’s go­ing to wear for his choir per­for­mance. And clean­ing up be­hind him­self.” —TA N YA

“Many times I have to say to Justin, ‘If you want to do this again, don’t tell your mother.’ ” —ROB “The big­gest life les­son I’ve learned from Rob is to re­lax— that I need to let go of con­trol or be­ing at­tached to out­comes and just take a breath. When he says the word ‘re­lax’ to me, it’s just so calm­ing. It’s like a mas­sage or a med­i­ta­tion.” —TA N YA “I like that my dad can talk to me about stuff like so­cial jus­tice, in­equal­ity, how to treat girls, be­ing aware of my sur­round­ings. And also how we can just joke around.” —JUSTIN “For years other par­ents would come up to me and say, ‘Justin’s a re­ally good kid.’ But you don’t no­tice it be­cause when it’s all you know, you think that’s just com­mon.” —ROB

PHO­TO­GRAPHS BY ME­LANIE ACEVEDO

Tanya Mom: Justin Son:

Justin Son:

Rob Dad: Justin Son:

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