Siblings and the issues that bring us together or divide us........
Posted Dec 12 2008 7:08pm
My past with my family (parents and 6 siblings) has been anything but loving and/or friendly. My parents are both deceased they died at a young age (father at 64 of cancer related illnesses and mother at 70 from heart disease). My siblings (5 brothers and 1 sister, all younger than myself) live in Missouri (various cities), and I live in Texas.
I'm not a good older sister/oldest sibling and I don't know why that is, I don't know why I really don't care. I've tried half heartedly to reinvest myself with the motley crew they call a family on numerous occasions only to find I have to put up with too much BS, lying, cheating, and being taken advantage of to possibly make it work. I would love to blame a large part of this on my parents, my mother especially, as her mode apparatus was to divide and conquer. She could only be friends with one of her children at a time and would talk about the other children with that one child, the next month the tables would turn and she'd have a new favorite, this went on until she died. To give you an idea about our relationship-- I didn't attend her funeral, didn't want to waste my time or money.
I've made the biggest inroads with my sister (9 years my junior), we're as different as dogs and cats, but somehow we're able to live and let die. Most all the things that keep us at odds, what we can't agree on, we agree to disagree and don't discuss it (although I do believe some of it sits in our craws and simmers to the point of boiling sometimes). We've had years at a time where we didn't speak and although I sometimes wondered where she was or what she was doing, I/We made no attempt to find out, to change the situation. I don't know if we were too busy to bother, didn't want the drama, or just didn't care, whatever it was, it happened more than once and we weren't there for one another when we needed to be. I'd like to believe that "some" of our distance was simply due to the difference in age, especially when I was married and had my children and she was still a young teenager, life experiences weren't happening in sync. I've gone to visit her in Mid-America (she loves rural living, I love the city) and we've gone fishing, she had a lake across the street from her house and we were a hop, skip, and jump to the Ozarks, we both love to freshwater fish, and we've gone to the riverboat casinos. She's come to visit me twice in the 16 years I've lived in Texas. A year ago we met up in Las Vegas for a few days (her first time there). We had a wonderful time, it was like meeting up with a girlfriend. We have the sisterly ability of finishing one another's thoughts, and we enjoy many of the same things (at the time we were both smokers too). We got drunk at 2:00 in the afternoon our last full day in Vegas and I wouldn't have wanted anyone but her with me for that experience, it was fun and sickening at the same time (I got sick, she didn't). Alas, we are still at different places in our lives, she and her husband (second marriage for both but he's a really nice guy and they are good together) are still working and are in the middle of yet another move (same city, different house), she has one of her boys that graduated from college, one that's still in college, where as my husband and I are both retired, both of our children are graduated from college many years ago, and I'm still married to my first husband (31 years now). It doesn't make a difference about the marriages other than it's a difference. Here we are together in Vegas last year
Then there are my brothers......if you are still with me on this post you need to get a coffee refill or better yet a stiff drink, better yet, I'll save this for another day.
I'd like to believe that the older we get the less the differences will matter, that we can find likenesses that are stronger than the differences. I want to be her sister but more than that, I want to be her friend - now I need to learn how.