When my grandmother died, my father was delayed getting to her home. The same day that she passed, my mother had her first miscarriage. My father finally listened to her when she said “Go”, so he arrived at his mother’s house to find it nearly empty. Her family, the family that had little to do with my father, because his Catholic mother had married aprotestant, had raided the place before he got there and took literally everything they could carry, leaving him only the heavy furniture we still have at the family home today.
When my other grandmother died, my mother’s brother and his wife decided that my mother was on a power trip and demanded more control in the estate. When my mother refused, stating that she had been chosen as executor for a reason, they disowned her. She wasn’t invited to the reception after the funeral. They never spoke to her again. When my mother died, that brother sat by himself at the back of the room and wept. He left, and barely said goodbye to us. I don’t expect I’ll ever see him again.
Death and money do funny things to people. I think they bring out our true nature. Unfortunately, in my family’s case, it hasn’t been entirely positive. I don’t want to get into details, because the point of this post isn’t to gossip, slander or hurt anyone. It makes me very sad to see that these trends, these horrible things that we’ve witnessed, have happened, despite our parents warning us and trying to teach us better.
I am hurt and disgusted. I am shocked and amazed.
I know, that at the end of this, my definition of family will have drastically changed. I know that I can see now, who loves me and who knows me. I can see who I will give the honour to share in our lives. I think too many people just let anyone in, and let them stomp all over their hearts. No, not anymore. Civility and manners are one thing, but love, relationships and the real meaning of family have to be earned. I have decided to value myself, to defend myself, and to do right by my parents.
Cherish yourself and listen to what your heart tells you. Sometimes it is the right thing to invoke your inner warrior and defend yourself. Sometimes it is better to keep quiet and let the situation calm down. I have to trust that my parents raised me right and that I can only do my best.