Home » Mi Familia Loca » Sigh. And Then Sigh Again.

Sigh. And Then Sigh Again.

So. I said I wasn’t going to blog about my youngest brother anymore. I lied. Because here I am again. Maybe this is the last time I’ll use this space to discuss him – who knows?

~ ~ ~ ~ picture it, Christmas Day 2013 ~ ~ ~ ~

Christmas Day I get a text from my Mom. It’s a picture actually. Of my brother, his wife, and their two children. I think “oh, isn’t that nice, they sent my Mom a pic so she could see the kids.” But wait. I recognize the background. The picture is of them outside of my Grandma’s house. In Los Angeles. California.

So I text my Mom back the only thing I could “uh, is that X and his people? In California? At Grandma’s?????”

Yep, sure was.

My Mom said she walked in my Grandma’s house, said a general “hey, Merry Christmas y’all, let me put these cheesecakes down” and then she thought she saw my brother, but figured she was tripping.  So she went in the kitchen, put the cheesecakes down, came back and stood in front of my brother and said ” X is that you?” “Yes. How are you mother?” Here we go with this ultra formal foolishness…

Anyhoo, turns out that my brother called my Grandma’s house one day about a week earlier and my uncle answered the phone and told my brother that Grandma was in the hospital. Which he would’ve known if he, oh, I don’t know, talked to his family….So from what we gather, they decided to take a week’s vacation and spend it in California checking in on my Grandma and playing tourists when not visiting at the hospital. Back to Christmas – my mom and dad tried to engage him in conversation, he wasn’t having it, nor was his wife. They were polite, but distant. My Mom did say the kids are really sweet and friendly. So there’s that. At some point my Mom asked if they were planning on coming to the house. “No.” Sigh.

After about an hour, they wished everyone a Merry Christmas and rolled out. My Mom says she didn’t see him anymore while they were in CA. My Grandma or aunt would say “X and his family came by today,” but the extent of his visit with my parents was that 60 minutes or so on Christmas Day. (I told my Mom a few years back I wouldn’t be surprised to learn he’d done something along these lines – in and out without contacting them – guess I was right)

~ ~ ~ ~ Fast forward to Friday, January 3 ~ ~ ~ ~

My Mom calls and lets me know my Grandmother died. She asks me to call my brothers and let them know. So I call Brother 1 and tell him. Brother 2 doesn’t answer, so I call Brother 3 (X) who, of course, doesn’t answer. Brother 2 calls back and I give him the news. Then I tell him that I tried to call X and let him know, but dude didn’t answer and I didn’t want to leave a VM or send a text to tell him Grandma’s died. So Brother 2 says he’s just gonna call X at work and let him know. Which is what he does. About 10 minutes later my phone rings “This is X. I’m returning your call.” Sigh. “Dude. I was just calling to let you know about Grandma. But I know you know, so really, that’s all.” So he asked about my family and I asked about his. Then I told him I’d call him back with the details about the services, or if he preferred I’d send a text. And that’s when he tells me he’s not going to the funeral – he saw Grandma alive and has no interest in attending her funeral. I say okay, take it easy, and the conversation ends.

~ ~ ~ ~ Fast forward to today ~ ~ ~ ~

I just don’t care anymore. If we talk, we talk. If we don’t, we don’t.

At the same time, I do still pray for reconciliation between him and the rest of us.

I pray that God not harden my heart toward my brother.

I wish he and his family the best. I pray for them just like I pray over my other brothers, SILs, nieces and nephews.

I can’t believe he’s not coming to the funeral. I know some people don’t “do” funerals and I get that (but not really), and I know my Grandma doesn’t care if he’s there or not, but I think it’s disrespectful not to attend when you have the means to do so.

I think I’ve gone through most of Kubler-Ross’ 5 stages of grief when it comes to my brother and his self-imposed exile from the family – denial, anger, bargaining, and acceptance. I most surely have not been depressed over  his antics.

I’m 41. X is 30. I do know that life has a way of handing your ass to you in ways you’d never expect and that he’d better pray to God above that his family never hurts him the way he’s hurt his.

And that’s all I’ve got.

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13 thoughts on “Sigh. And Then Sigh Again.

  1. I’m really sorry you’re dealing with this on top of grieving the loss of your grandmother. This probably sounds trite, but when it comes to the hardening of your heart, there is a quote that might apply. Be kinder than necessary because everyone you meet is going through something. Your brother is going through something. I pray that everyone is able to reconcile and soon. Life is too short as it is.

  2. This is pretty sad but I feel you on it. I wouldn’t stress myself about someone who most certainly isn’t stressing himself about me.

  3. First off I’m sorry I brought it up on Twitter at all. I apologize because I know this is painful for you. Secondly, don’t stress yourself further, but please do continue to pray for him and his family’s well being. That’s all you can do.

  4. Believe it or not, I can relate to all of this. I have a sibling that acts just like x.
    Every time I think I’m done, because I can’t deal with the hurt anymore (and I do hurt over this though in the estranged eyes, how can that possibly be) God pricks my heart to not give up. The verse that has ministered to me in this time is: how many times should i forgive my brother and the answer is 70*7 and since I’m nowhere near that number, I figure with God’s grace I’ll continue to do what I can.

    Praying for strength, grace and wisdom at this time.

  5. This is flipping heartbreaking. Cause the thing with his behavior (like any other kind of grief within a family) is that you deal with your own feelings about your brother’s actions but you also end up dealing with the pain that comes from seeing your loved ones hurt. It’s such a double whammy.

    I hope your brother finds himself and works to repair his relationship with his family. I’m glad to hear that you’ve wrestled your way to some sort of truce in the meantime, though. Geesh.

  6. I’m sorry that you have to deal with this. Your brother will have to decide the life he will live, who will be in it and live with the consequences of his actions. We’ve all been given one life and free will. I hope he chooses to see the value in choosing his family.

  7. As I was reading how he handled your mom on Xmas it really hurt my feelings and I don’t even know him. I’m a mom of two boys and I can’t imagine pouring my all into them for at least 18 years and then one of then turning their back on me. That’s a hard pill to swallow. I don’t know the backstory but I do know that nothing is too hard for God and reconciliation is possible. I’ll be praying for that and especially your parents.

  8. This really is heartbreaking. It sounds quite similar to my husband’s brother. My in-laws all blame the wife but we all know that it’s obviously his choice too.

  9. Life is so short and to spend any time of it being in a feud with your family? No. I feel for your mother and the rest of your family and hope you can get through it soon.

  10. I’m so sorry for all of you, especially your little brother. Undiagnosed mental illness is a horrible thing to have because you don’t even know you’re sick.

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