I was really into the holidays last year. I don’t know why, but my mood was high. Right now I feel as dreary as the grubby grey sky outside my window.
We spent Thanksgiving in Phoenix with Dear Husband’s family. I was really looking forward to seeing Phoenix again. As it turned out, I felt rather ill much of the time. My head ached and my energy dragged. The girls had a great time, as there were kids their age to play with and uncles and grandparents to dote on them. One evening I heard the girls calling “grandpa” and a terrible sense of loss crushed me. “Grandpa” is Dear Husband’s father. Their other grandpa is dead, only vaguely remembered really. He won’t see DramaQueen and Firecracker come of age. My mother died before Firecracker was thought of, and DramaQueen doesn’t remember her at all.
I asked one of my brothers, the one who lived closest to my father, to stay with us at Christmas so that he wouldn’t be alone. My family is so odd. My brothers are tight. They are close in age and far older than me, off on their own by the time I was born. My mom was the one who kept everyone connected. She remembered the birthdays. She told me what was up with my brothers and told them what was up with me. Because, simply, they don’t think about me. At least, not very often. You could argue that I haven’t made much effort to stay in touch (true enough), but you can also say that they haven’t made much effort, either. One of my brothers lives not much more than 30 minutes from me and I never see him. The last time I did (at our dad’s funeral) he told me amusing stories about his friend’s two year old. I thought, “You have nieces, actual nieces. We’ve been living here for 6 years and they’ve been bloody adorable and amusing the whole time.”
And so it was, that I found myself surrounded by my husband’s family, and felt the loss of my own.