Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Post-Holiday Thoughts

It is a foggy night outside my window as I type, and I soak in the winter. I love the dark months of the year, unlike most people. The only thing that sucks about the change of seasons is it always makes me homesick. Homesick for my mom's house, which thankfully I can still return to, but will never be the same. Homesick for belonging to a family and not being able to go "home for the holidays," as everyone else seems to do each year. Sometimes I feel like an orphan. My last grandmother passed away recently, and so I am officially at the top of my female family line.

The hardest thing over the last three years has been having no family home. I have lots of extended family, but they all have their own immediate family circles, of which I don't belong. I am so very thankful that my two aunts always extend their home for me to call my 'homebase.' Me and my kids stay with them any time I travel to Stockton, and I just don't know what I would do without them and their hospitality. So I carry on each season, grateful to have the friends I have, and I make my own traditions, and I try not to think about the fact that I no longer travel eastward for the holidays. I guess some people have big happy families and some people just don't.

I also try not to think about how hard it sucks that my grandparents just couldn't get their shit together enough to do right by their kids and emotionally invest in their future. I can trace the dysfunction all the way back on both sides of my family--all the way back to my great-grandparents. We're talking Mexico and Spain here, people--so this shit goes back. I work so hard on making my kids' lives brighter each day, and on making sure that the relationships I build with them today will result in healthy relationships among their children and grandchildren that I just don't understand what made my grandparents blip out like that when it came to basic parenting skills. I mean, what the hell were they thinking? Did they not stop to think for two seconds that their actions (or inactions) would impact their children in such major ways? So here I am, sixty years later, writing about how tough it's been living with the results of alcoholism, abandonment, divorce, co-dependence and depression. Thanks, guys. You're the tops.

Ah, cynicism.