Like me, you may be collapsing on the couch after a bunch of festivities with friends and family. I spent my holiday with my in-laws and not my own siblings because my family has been pretty messed up for a while. My parents have passed on, as well as two of my siblings, and those of us who are left don’t get together in one place. There is alcoholism, there is severe mental illness, in one case there is a belligerent attitude and a total lack of tolerance for anyone not sharing the same beliefs. . . so there are some phone conversations and very few actual house visits. It is less dangerous to meet in a restaurant once a year, even though you may live in the same town.
I’m only saying this because I know I’m not the only one sitting here relieved that Christmas is over. You are probably doing the same thing. It’s unfortunate when the links between family members have been severed by death and illness and various forms of broken communication and misunderstandings. We celebrate with those who are welcoming but we can’t help but shed a tear sometimes. The holiday season, with so many expectations, can be desperately difficult.
Lately I have given up on all the broken connections and thought I would just have to do without. It is just so hard to keep on trying, calling people who don’t return your calls, and not understanding why. Sometimes it’s a case of a relative now deceased who didn’t like one branch of the family and had cut them off years ago. You’d think that with the meanie dead, the connections would begin again. But no, it seems like, once broken, always broken, and there’s nothing that can be done to change it.
So tonight I tried again. Idiot that I am, chances are that I will be hurt again, and I don’t think I can take it. I called someone, I tried a little honesty, there was surprise, I think, but not condemnation, as far as I know. There is always a tiny chance of a tiny miracle. At least that’s what they say.
(For an update on this situation, check out the comment which I wrote myself.)