Wednesday, October 24, 2012
Our brothers and sisters are there with us from the dawn of our personal stories to the inevitable dusk. ~ Susan Scarf Merrell
As to the other brother, the one with me in this photo, we became estranged over 20 years ago. I have not seen him face-to-face or heard his voice since he so abruptly cut me out of his life because I missed the wedding reception for one of his daughters. I was caring for an aunt of my husband's who was like a second mother to me while she was on her deathbed and couldn't break away. He told our father as far as he was concerned I was no longer a part of the family, and he meant what he said. Not only was I cut off from him but also my nieces and my grand-nephews and grand-niece. If it wasn't for Facebook I wouldn't have any idea what any of them look like. Until recently I had no idea what my brother looks like now either, until one of his daughters posted a photo of him with her. To say I was shocked puts it mildly. The last time I saw him he was 41. He's now 61...silver-haired like me but he looks 10 years older. Has he been ill? Or is it all the bitterness piled up inside that's taken its toll on him thru the years?
I know I've posted about this in the past. I was heartbroken when this estrangement happened and it took a long time to accept it and realize he truly was unforgiving and wanted nothing more to do with me. At this stage of the game it's one of those hurts that's kind of like a tooth going bad, a dull ache every now and then when I think about it. But a couple days ago I was searching thru our thousands of photos, trying to locate one for a friend of mine, and I came across this one and a few other rare ones from my early childhood. And I got to thinking about him. I thought about sending a copy of it and a few others to my niece...I have sent her a Message in the past on Facebook without any response. I don't imagine he has many, if any childhood photos. Honestly, I doubted whether he'd be interested, so I put the photos away after I'd taken pictures of them and posted them on my Facebook page. I shut the lid, put the box on its shelf in the basement, and resigned myself - once again - to the fact that the days when we sat side-by-side next to our beloved Grammy are part of a past I can never regain.