S is for Siblings

April 23, 2011 Uncategorized 6

I’m reading (listening to really) a wonderful book,The Weird Sisters, by Eleanor Brown.  I love this book, it’s quirky and yet really hits home.  Three grown sisters return home to help their parents when their mom is diagnosed with breast cancer, they really come home to also help themselves.  I have been thinking so much about my own relationships with my sisters, and also the brother.
My story is likely much less entertaining than the NYT bestseller I am reading, but it has deep secrets and great joy and tragedy.
I have two sisters, Ouida and Bonita, yes our names all rhyme, and one brother, Chuck.  They are all 12, 11 and 6 years older than me, I am the youngest and all too often still referred to as the baby, and yes I am 51.
I want to much love each of them but these relationships they have had some divisions.  My sister Ouida and I are very close, we talk often, she lives close to my aging parents and she is the rock of the siblings, she is the peacemaker and the caregiver.  She has supported me through raising kids and our aging parents.  She calls me when she needs an ear or a shoulder to cry on.  We give and take very well.  We both read and share books we’ve loved.  She would be the kind of woman I would friend if she were not my sister.
My sister Bonita lives 3000 miles from me, and I last saw her about 7 years ago I think.  We have very little in common, her life has been a series of dramas and I can’t understand some of her choices.  When I was young, I saw her as the fun sister, she was a bit wild, and ran free.  Now she is a poster child for what happens when you don’t really grow up.  I do care for her, but at the same time I find it easier to have little to do with her.
My brother is another story all together.  No matter my age or my accomplishments I am always going to be his little sister, and I am not mature, or worth much of anything.  He has antagonized me greatly over the last 20 years.  Honestly as a child he picked on me so much, it’s a wonder I had any respect for him at all.   I have tried to love him, and his family.  He has three children, and while I love them, I have little contact with them.  His wife is good to my parents, which I thank her for, but with me she is selfish and cold.  I fear my relationship with him will be lost when my parents are gone.  While it makes me sad there is little I can do.
So siblings, love them? hate them? have to admit to them…ha ha,they are with us in many unique forms.
Tell me how you are blessed or stuck.

6 Responses to “S is for Siblings”

  1. Beth

    You have heard my story over and over…All of my siblings I care a lot for and about…but only a few are brought into my home…so to speak.. I look forward to the next generation growing and producing!

  2. Zibilee

    Your relationship with your brother sounds just like mine, though he is the younger one. I only talk to him twice a year, on his birthday and Christmas, and I know that when my mom is gone there will be no contact between us whatsoever. The strange thing is that we used to be really close, that is until he got involved with someone who didn’t like our family very much. It’s painful to think about, really, so I understand where you are coming from.

    By the way, I loved The Weird Sisters, and had such an amazing time meeting Eleanor last weekend. Did you get the chance to meet her as well?

  3. Pam

    Family relationships really can be so tricky and they do run the gamut. I only have one brother who is 2 years younger than I am. He lives 1/4 mile away from me and we see each regularly, but only if there is a reason. We do get along, but we don’t really socialize. Maybe it’s because he’s a man and we don’t have all that much in common. He is very good friends with my husband, however. It’s a very civilized, if not particularly close, relationship. But I’m very content with the way things are. Though I have a feeling when our parents need help I’m not going to be able to count on him at all. And that worries me some.

  4. Sandy

    I’m an only so I’m always a little curious about what it’s like to have siblings. I’ve heard some onlies say things like “I would NEVER do that to my children!” meaning never only have one. For me it was a matter of you can’t miss what you never had.

    Paul has three brothers and I always enjoyed when we all got together although we don’t all that often anymore since all the families have gotten bigger.

    I assume if I had siblings taking care of my mother would be easier but then maybe not. That usually falls on one child no matter how many there are. At least since it’s only me, I don’t have to consult anyone when a decision about Mom has to be made.

  5. Bonnie

    Thank you for sharing this Anita. We all have different stories. I too am the baby. I have a brother who is 4 yrs older and has always stayed in the town in Kansas I grew up in. I wish we talked more often but we don’t stay in contact all that well..we talk every few months or so. My sister is 6 yrs older and lives in AZ. She was a wild teenager and left home and moved to AZ when I was 12 so we weren’t real close. We have gotten closer through the years especially since my Mom passed away 10 years ago.

  6. Terra

    I am blessed. My brother and his wife are amazing people…If anything I am just plain jealous of them…but not in an ugly way!

Leave a Reply