It’s been a while.  The last month has been a cluster-f*ck.  Seriously.  It started with my job…  and then the hits just kept coming.  I can’t stand when people are upset with me.  I will apologize and assume blame for things that don’t belong to me just to make things right…  It doesn’t make things right, and then I feel even worse.  So while I am carrying that weight around, I see on Facebook that one of my great uncles has passed.  Now, I know most people are not terribly close to their great uncles, but this is a man I remember very fondly and am very sad to have lost touch with as I got older.  There were many factors in that, none of which matter right now, but it happened and I will miss him dearly.  He is one of few people I remember well from my childhood and I cannot recall a single negative experience with him…  I know when people die, we tend to remember only the best, but seriously, the man was awesome.  He always made me smile and his own smile wAs contagious beyond expression.  I am so sad that he is no longer among us and it breaks my heart that my own babies will never get to see that smile. 

You never know what sadness will bring up…  I think most people get angry…  I did.  I got angry that I didn’t have a relationship with my family conducive to finding out about a death other than through Facebook.  And then, I just got crushed.  I realized that I sacrificed relationships with people I love because of him, because they can’t seem to stop asking me to have a relationship with him, and because I don’t want them to feel they must choose between us.  The last time I was in a room with any of them, it was brought up again that Gram wanted us to reconcile.  At one point, that may have been possible, though I don’t think it would have been permanent.  At no point in the last 5 years has reconciliation been a thought of mine, let alone an ideal.  It never will be.  I used to think if he acknowledged what he did wrong and apologized, I could move past it and have some sort of relationship with him.  There is nothing he can say or do that would make me think that now.  Nothing.  You can say all day long that forgiveness is crucial, but forgiveness doesn’t mean you have to allow that person to be in your life.  Some things are simply unforgiveable and destroying a person is one of them.  There are so many things that happened that shaped me in ways I can’t stand.  I am terrified of my anger and in my attempt to control it, have allowed others to walk over and take advantage of me.  Every time I have a drink, I am afraid I will remember how good I felt and that I don’t hurt and I will just keep drinking.  I can’t forgive him those things.  I try to get my kids every little thing they ever ask for because I don’t want them to ever want for anything, especially not something I have promised and never deliver.  Asking a child to lie, to people she loves most, to cover your own sins, is unforgiveable.  Either not noticing or not caring that your child is wearing her mother’s clothes to school because her own are too small, is unforgiveable.  Maybe you don’t agree…  That’s you.  I’m an adult and these are the decisions and consequences I can live with.    

I miss my family so very, very much.  I miss family reunions at that huge park and what seemed like days of food, games, and just so much love, laughter, and warmth, and sunshine…  I miss backyard get-togethers at 534…  I miss 534.  Holy Shenanigans I miss 534.  Maybe Gram did want me to reconcile, but I don’t think she would have wanted me to lose that entire portion of my family if I couldn’t.  And I can’t.  I can’t.  I shake just thinking about it.  I hate that he’s less than a day’s drive from me.  I hate that he has e-mailed my husband… 

Challenges make us grow, says my mom.  She’s right.  But damned if this isn’t a helluva growth spurt, and one I’m not entirely sure I can survive without some serious emotional stunting.