It seems a little ridiculous. I’m a grandma, and today I feel as if I am an orphan. Pretty silly, huh? I’ve been going through this catastrophically tremulous period in my life. My dad died way too young. He was 51 jogging around the block. My mom died a few years ago and I think it didn’t affect me as much as my dad’s death still does. Until now. Maybe because my dad’s was such an unexpected and untimely death and my mom was 83 and not in the greatest health. She was suffering and a believer, so I felt that she was going to a better place and wouldn’t have to suffer anymore. So, it was bitter sweet.

A couple of years after my dad died, my stepdad came along, married my mom, and promptly sold our family home that I grew up in. I was married at the time, and it was my mom’s decision, and I was happy that she was happy again and moving on. But there was just a tiny bit of a piece of my legacy and a little bit of my dad, falling away from the foundation I knew. Later, I would come to fully understand just what a pattern this truly was. The quick decisions, obviously not ever needing any input from me. Shrug, smile.

My mom moved quickly. They combined households and then purchased one together. Now they are selling the home that they lived in for a few decades and for some reason I feel like an orphan. Kind of like I don’t belong to a part of a family anymore. I mean, the one I came from. Now, I know, I am part of my own family, the one I made with my husband. And I guess that is the way it is meant to be. And the friends I have made in my lifetime have become family. But it’s a funny feeling when the ones that once felt like family, feel like strangers. And your beginning foundation or heritage is gone, like dust swept beneath the carpet. It just makes me sad. And writing is my way of figuring things out. But I don’t think anyone can explain this one to me. Except maybe… there are certain times when you find out people’s true colors and that’s when you make yourself a promise to never be surprised again. Because NOW you know what to expect.

Once upon a time.. there was this girl….

who had a family….

7 thoughts on “When people disappoint you…

  1. My parents are still alive and still living in the family home they bought way back in 1966. But they are getting close … my dad is 88, my mom is 86 and their health is deteriorating. But I don’t think I’ll have the same struggles with this as you. For a number of reasons, while I have good relationships with them, I don’t depend on them for anything (I’m not saying you were). Once I moved out of the familiy home, my life became mine. And as you say, once I married and had kids, the four of us became my familiy. It’s one of the differences between my wife and I, her parents and sister and nieces and nephews and others remain a vital part of what she defines as her family. But for me, my family is limited to the four of us, and the rest (parents, siblings, etc.) are a level or two down. They are not my focus.

    Meanwhile, I heard something yesterday that struck a chord with me. You saw my post from yesterday about friends. I heard this after I wrote that post. Family is by chance, friends are by choice. And those friends, the ones who fill my emotional tank, my intellectual tank, my support tank — those are my family.

    Here’s another concept … a phrase somebody used to describe my latest novel The Dime. Found family. We all have different kinds of family we surround ourselves with.

    You are not alone. You are not an orphan. You are surrounded by people who love you, care about you, support you, and also people who you provide the same kind of love and support to. Wallow in those friends and family members and never forget that there are plenty who care and keep you in their minds and hearts.

    1. You had me crying again! More because your words constantly resonate with me & poke my heart! Thank you so much! After making my stepdad’s family my own for over 3 decades, they are the ones my title refers to. I was the one basically watching over him for years. Weekly meals, including him in all our holidays & Super Bowl type events, while they basically lived their lives. And then just recently there has been an alarming decline indicative of bizarre decision making on my dad’s part. Both his kids have made it clear that they don’t want to harm their relationship with their dad. (I have had to be the heavy in some hard talks with him.) Bottom line, blood is thicker than water. They are making all of the decisions. And that’s okay, I’ve washed my hands. But thank you for reminding me. Reiterating who truly is my family.

  2. your words will resonate with SOOOOO many … i have been in that frame of mind since i started taking of my mom in 2014, when both my sisters passed away… i was reminded many times i was basically the housekeeper/caregiver. i left home at 18(joined the Army) because i was the outsider, i always felt like i was standing outside the window looking in, and even more so now, *sigh*
    Please know i empathize with you as i attempt to find me and a life again…
    I won’t do the rambling on, just a wish you the Best of what is yet to BE….

    Take Care…You Matter…

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