Haul Out the Holly!!

December 8, 2010 Uncategorized 7

It’s December and while I live in Florida we look like a holiday wonderland.  We’ve got blow up characters in the yard.  We’ve got a big (artificial) tree in our den, and it’s sparkly and bright.  I do miss a real tree, but here it’s so hard.  The trees are shipped from up North, and between the time of cut to sale, the trees are already losing needles and a mess.  The pollens really messed Nick up too.  Adaption and adjustment are a good thing, right?

I’ve been shopping, not really a chore for me, I like to shop, I like new things for me and my family.  The kids made lists, and I was able to get most of what they wanted.  Less big items this year.  One item I got for my parents was an album of my girl’s Senior Photos.  I sent it early, they love it. 

I often also dislike this hustle and bustle and attitude of buy buy buy and greed.  Not everyone gets lost in the money and I love people like that.  I love those that focus on family and love and the being together.  I admire those who put their faith first.  As you can observe I have mixed emotions.

In 3 days, Nick and I are headed to Dallas for a long weekend with my family.  Originally Nick was going alone, so he could go to a Cowboy football game with my brother, who happens to have Season Tickets.  My parents were flying him in, etc etc.  Because Nick is just 12 he would be an unaccompanied minor, and it would cost an extra $100 each way.  So then Kevin was going to go with him, my family loves him, but he is busy planning a board meeting.  I am going!!  Now don’t get me wrong, I’m happy to be going, I love my folks, sister etc.  It’s just a busy time.  I also have issues………..no surprise!!

How is it possible that there are two people who can make me feel like 15 instead of 50?  I am also filled with guilt, guilt that I live far away and don’t see them as much as they would like.  Guilt that my whole family doesn’t often go to TX at the same time.  Guilt that I don’t call enough, you know in general I’m not sure I’m doing the best thing for them.  They do love me, I’m not trying to say it’s all bad stuff.  The other issue is their age, and the toll it’s taken on them and their health.  My dad has Parkinson’s and he is legally blind from macular degeneration.  He has some signs of dementia, and it’s sad to see he’s not the same man that raised me.  I try to look for the moments when he is more like his old self.  It’s not always easy.  Oddly enough my kids are so patient and sweet with them.  I admire their compassion at such a young age. 
My other stress with family is my brother, who can be a total ass.  He is 6 years older than me, he has 3 children, one from a first marriage, he is now grown 32, married with a business of his own.  His other kids are 24 and 22 and in grad school and college respectively.  I like his current wife(of 25+ years) but I am not really close to her.  She has 3 sisters and a close relationship to them, their families and her mom.  My brother is not close to my sister an I, not in a way that he calls us just to say hi, talk about how we are, our families, just chat about mom and dad etc.  Now he is always there in a crisis with my folks, he is strong and caring in the moments of stress.  We’ve always had a weird relationship, he has always treated me like the “little” sister, oddly enough his wife is younger than me…but I’m the “kid”.  My brother can be crass, and a jerk.  Last summer as Caitie was interning in Dallas her then boyfriend went to visit for a long weekend.  My brother thought it would be funny to tease me a bit by suggesting they were just having sex all weekend, hope she’s using condoms, oh what will they name the baby, etc. etc.  Now I can take a joke, but the not so funny thing was that while he called me and was teasing me, my parents were right with him.  My parents who thought he was being rude and crass and knew I was ticked off when I hung up on him.  It was a month later before I found out he was saying all this in front of them.  My mom confessed my dad was upset for two nights, and she was worried Caitie would learn of it and be so embarrassed.  Seeing him is just a chore now, it takes all I have to just ignore him, and not rip him another bowel opening, if you know what I mean. 

Well you know what, if you read this and give me just a little atta girl, encouragement I am way ahead, blogging is good therapy!!!  Writing it out is good for my brain, the rest is just a little icing!

7 Responses to “Haul Out the Holly!!”

  1. Terra

    Now I bet that felt good! I laughed out loud at the beginning of the last paragraph…Anita, try not to put too much pressure on yourself to BE while you are there, there are millions of people who see and talk to family less than you do, there are big brothers all over the world that make little sisters feel like dog poop and well….for 3 or 4 days you are going to wish you were home, SO when you get back you will be happy. Yes, You will.

  2. Miss Healthypants

    Oh, Anita…I feel your pain! Families can be tough to deal with sometimes. I’m sorry about your aging parents and your sometimes jerky brother.

    I hope your Texas visit goes well…keep us posted! And do what you can to cherish the time with your folks…I’ll say a prayer for you!

  3. Mnmom

    People are hard to like, let alone love. My big brother is a lot like yours. He’s not crass, but he’s just not very communicative. Trying to have a conversation with him is painful.

    Vent all you want, I’ll listen!

  4. Beth

    Family can be hell sometimes…I think I have told you about my issues with my family! And my mother…oy vay!

    Enjoy your time with your parents… hopefully your brother will mind his manners!

    Have fun in Texas

  5. Bonnie

    Oh Anita, I love your honesty. I’m glad you can write about it. I think it is good therapy!

    I’m sorry to hear about your Dad. It’s hard to watch our Daddies who we looked up to so much deteriorate. It’s just one of those facts of life I guess.

    I will be thinking about you and praying for strength for you!

  6. Pam

    I’m a little late getting here and by now you are knee deep into your Texas visit. I hope it is going well. Enjoy your time with your parents and try to ignore all the other “stuff”. Did anyone ever talk to your brother about the inappropriateness of his comments concerning Caitie last summer? If not I think it’s important that he know that he upset your elderly and ill Dad and that his comments could have deeply hurt a young and impressionable girl. He should be called out on that. Maybe you could do it in a phone call or email so as not to spoil this visit. Good luck!

  7. Anita

    I’m guessing that your brother doesn’t read your blog. lol

    Maybe he should!

    I understand your feelings. So many deep-rooted issues that are hard to fix.

    EnJoy your visit if you can. Try hard. But if you need to tell someone off, or to have a heart to heart conversation – do it!

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