I can't sleep. I can't tell if it's because I had a cappaccino at 10:00 this evening or because my aunt is staying in my house and I'm still digesting our dinner conversation.
This is my Dad's sister. Most people who read this know that my Dad died under horrible circumstances about 4 years ago. I have not heard from my aunt or grandmother since and now all of a sudden she's here to visit. To say the least I freaked out about the whole situation. First of all I did not get her message that she was coming today until 6:00pm, an hour before she arrived. Second I didn't think I was going to have to see her at all. I thought I had gotten out of the situation by telling Mom that it was too stressful for me and opting out of flying up north, but it seems that my aunt wouldn't let me get away so easily.
I was a bundle of nerves going to meet her for dinner. I had to take a lot of deep breaths and just tell myself that I was not to let her make me feel guilty and to refuse to talk about my Dad's death if she brought it up. To say I was cool to her was probably an understatement, but the truth is I don't know how to act around her. She used to be my favorite aunt, but now I feel like I have to watch everything I say as she will probably use anything I say to make me seem like a bitch to the rest of my family. Maybe not, but I feel like anything I say regarding the situation makes me seem distant and uncaring, but it's the only way I can keep myself from screaming at her.
She of course brought up my father's death. I told her I didn't want to talk about it. That it was done and there was nothing we could do about it. That I missed him, but that it was his choice to leave us and I don't think we'll ever know exactly why. She of course argued and said that we do know why. That we could have done something. That she wants to make sure that the family stays close as everyone has drifted apart since my grandfather and father have died. My reaction, "Where have you been for the last four years? You haven't been there to talk about this. You don't call, you don't write, and now just because you're here you want to talk. I'm finally getting over this. I'm sick of talking about it."
She said that she couldn't bring herself to write or call the last four years. She could however bring herself to send legal papers.
Mainly things were left unsaid. She didn't really push the conversation to much and I mainly remained tight lipped about the whole thing mummbling sounds that sounded like I agreed. I think she kinda gave up talking about it. I sure I seemed like a cold hearted uncaring bitch, but the truth is I will never know what she went through and she will never know what I went through. I know she cares, but for me the idea of analyzing why Dad died, or assigning blame to oneself or others is stupid. He's gone and I have to live with that. I miss him and think of him often, but wallowing in his loss will not help me or anyone else and I don't think it is something that he would have wanted.
What annoys me most is how she has made me feel today. This past year I finally feel like I've come out of the craziness that has been my life for the past six years. I feel like I am laughing more, that I am in general a happier person who is enjoying her life and the people around her. When my parents split I became a bit of an emotional wreck and just as I was getting past that my dad died. Now when I feel like I'm finally get past that and starting to feel like who I was before this whole mess began she has brought all of those feelings back.
I feel like Dad's family views me and perhaps my mother and sister as well as people who didn't really care about him. We abandonned him when he needed us. We don't really seem to care that he is gone. And it bothers me to know that I am letting her make me feel this way. That I am feeling guilty even though I KNOW there is nothing more I could have done to help my Dad no matter what they say.
That she has come here, to a place I have been happy for the past year and presumes to tell me that I need to talk about my father. That I don't know all the cirumstances is absurd. He's gone. I loved him. I did what I could for him at the time. He left us and he let us down, not the other way around. I am at peace with what happened, because it did happen and there is nothing I can do to change that. I am a big believer of accepting things and moving on. To continue looking back and discussing what happened seems counter productive and unhealthy to me. I would much rather talk about the good times I had with him and the family. Dwelling on the bad things does nothing but depress me, and it is no wonder that they still all seem so unhappy.
But then again maybe there is a culture barrier or a language one. maybe we are not communicating as well as we could be. Maybe I am taking offense at things that I shouldn't. Maybe I am being too sensitive to what she is saying. Maybe I am so disturbed by this whole thing because I'm scared she's right......
This is what keeps going through my mind as I try to go to sleep. It is now 2:30 and I have to be up at 5:30 to get ready for work. To say that I will need coffee in the morning is an understatment. She will be coming to my work before she leaves and then I will probably not see her again for a very long time. Perhaps if I do see her or the family again it will after a long enough time for them to heal so that we can connect as a family again without blame or questions.
Thank you to all those I called freaked out because I could not reach mom or Ady. Michele, Sonjia, Krista and Kate you are the best. And thank you to all of those who read this. I needed to get this out into the universe. I needed to empty my brain so that maybe it will silent enough in my brain for me to sleep.
Here's to a caffine charged morning.....Posted by nuala at May 27, 2004 02:30 AM