Posts Tagged ‘sister’

Rabbit Rant

December 9, 2009

I spent over 5 minutes quietly ranting at a rabbit Monday night.

Okay, it wasn’t a real rabbit.  It was a white and blue porcelain rabbit.

And it held the cremated remains (cremains!) of my sister.

The memorial service wasn’t really a service, but more of a remembrance of my sister for her local friends.  Given the quick scheduling of the event, there were only 5 family members who could attend, me being one of them.

The remembrance was held in the chapel.  The cremains and two pictures of my sister were at the front.  People who wished stood up and gave a story or two remembering my sister.

The stories told were mysteries to me.  The type of woman described was unknown to me.  I had no clue who this woman was.  She never let me in.  Even when I asked to be let in…to come visit in her waning months…she refused.  Phone conversations, what few there were, tended to the superficial.

When the remembrance was over, my brother-in-law invited all the folks back to a side room in the funeral home to reminisce and chat a bit more.

And once they were all gone, I had my chance to go to the front of the chapel and finally really say “Goodbye” to my sister.

But I just stared at the rabbit.  Words wouldn’t come.  I stared some more.  It hit me — here I am, a grown man, staring at a porcelain rabbit.

And I slowly let loose with what was on my mind.  As I said, quietly.  People were still in the hallway outside the chapel.  I spoke in a whisper…through gritted teeth.

I ranted at her.  I asked her why she treated me, her own brother, so poorly.  I asked why she was a better sister to my ex- than she was to me.  I asked why she was a better friend to all those in the room who were strangers to me, than she was to me.

And, of course, she didn’t answer.

So, I left it at “Goodbye”.

And still feel unsatisfied.

This will take awhile.

But, hey…how many people can say they’ve ranted at a rabbit?

no carrots for you!

Mixed Emotions

December 6, 2009

GnuKid's sister

My sister passed away this past Thursday due to complications from lung cancer.

As I’ve mentioned a couple times previously, we were not that close.  Her lack of sisterly love for me when I decided to divorce made us even more distant.  Since I told her I was divorcing, we’ve talked on the phone only some 20 times in the past year.  Of that, I initiated the call 17 times.  Of the 3 she initiated, 2 were about funeral arrangements for an aunt who had passed.

Still, she was my sister.  Thus the subject line.  Mixed Emotions.

I am sorry that she died.  And at ‘only’ 66 years of age.  She didn’t suffer when she actually went, but was not doing well with the lung cancer.

I feel badly that I didn’t really get a chance to say “goodbye” to her.  But, likewise, I wasn’t really allowed to say goodbye, either.  I asked her a couple of times if I could come out and visit.  Each time I was told, “This is not a good time.”

Near the end, due to a health issue, her husband asked everyone to “don’t call her, she’ll call you”.  Having been a caregiver to my ex-wife during her illness, I fully respected his request and did not call.  Come to find out that one of the few people she did call?  My ex-.  She was a better sister to my ex- than she was to me.

I feel badly for her husband and daughter.  It was very clear when my brother-in-law called to tell me she passed that he was distraught.  I feel for him.

A strange emotion hit me.  I can’t describe, really, the realization that I’m the last of the 4 siblings.  Yes, I am the youngest.  And, yes, I have many cousins left in my generation.  And even aunts and an uncle left in my Mom and Dad’s generation (though both Mom and Dad are gone).  But in my immediate family, I am the last of the 4 siblings.  Still haven’t wrapped my brain around that emotion.

She did not act like a sister to me.  I can’t really grieve as if she was.  Yet, still, she was my sister.  She was family.  And she’s gone now.  And for that, I am sorry.

When you consider my sister’s passing, along with my brother’s passing last year around this time, plus the divorce, moving out of the married home, moving into a new ‘single’ place, and add in a few other life stressors, this has made for an emotionally frenetic year for GnuKid.

I am ready for the Karma Goddess to embrace me lovingly instead of kicking me in the ass and crotch like she’s got PMS and blames me.

My Sister

June 27, 2008

I am emotionally detached from my sister. She seems more like a distant third aunt twice removed, than a sister. Some of that is because she was already a teenager when i showed up as an “oops” child. The rest of the reason? I’m not sure.

There are other things through my life which made me feel detached from her, but the defining moment in my relationship with sis was when my niece, my sister’s only child, got married a few years back. Two events lay etched in my mind—

The first event pissed me off more than it should have, so I’m admitting to some over-sensitivity. Having struggled with being overweight all my life… and at this point in time weighing the most I ever did… I was nonetheless shocked by what happened. After the wedding, when the eleventy-seven pictures were being taken, it was time for the pictures of the bride’s uncles and mom. My sister, always the fussy organizer, was trying to get my brother and me in just the right place for the photo. Just before the picture was taken, she looked at me again and said, none too quietly,

Sister: “Don’t worry, GnuKid, the photographer can photoshop out your double chins.”

Now… smile for the picture, GnuKid. Good thing I’m an actor.

That event teed me up for the quickly following second, which my Boy Child shared with me after the pictures and just before the reception.

It was a small wedding which seemed to have many details left to the last. There were no ushers planned for, so my Boy Child was ‘volunteered’ for duty 10 minutes before the ceremony. A quick instruction was sufficient for him—seat the groom’s family on the right, the bride’s on the left, and ‘leave the first two rows for immediate family, including my sister’s siblings’. After all were seated (the Boy dutifully seating me in the second row), the last in were to be parents of the bride and groom. When my sister came to the door to be escorted in, there was a panicked exchange with Boy Child—

Sister: “What’s GnuKid doing sitting in the second row? That’s for immediate family! You have to re-seat him! Wait… [pause]… that’s right… he’s my brother… he’s my brother… he’s my brother…”.

Funny? Yeah, I can see the humor. But after a life of feeling so distant from her, this just sealed that feeling.

But, she’s family. Do I love her? Yeah… Do I like her? Well… no.