It’s been a crazy 4 or 5 days. That’s why it’s taken me so long to get this post out. But, here it is.
Since my I’m sans car, my Uncle, who lives close by, agreed to pick me up on his way up to my parent’s house. He didn’t come until noon. So, I was able to sleep in. I had to close the store Wednesday night. So, I was thankful for that. But, for some reason, my uncle came to the driveway, which I can’t see from my side of the house. Maybe he thought I would be waiting out there. I forgot to ask him if he doesn’t have my phone number. Because instead of calling me himself, he called my mom. Who, in turn, called me to let me know that he was there waiting for me. I was catching up with my roommate when the message came in. So, I hurriedly rushed outside.
The drive up to my parent’s house isn’t very far. About 15 miles. And it’s almost all up hill. I’ve done it before on the bike. It takes about 45 minutes on the single speed. The last thing I wanted to do on Thanksgiving was arrive all sweaty. So, I was grateful for the ride.
When we arrived, I said hello to everyone and then sat next to my grandmother. I don’t get to see my grandparents very often. So, it’s nice catching up whenever I can get the chance. About a month ago, there was a scare about her hip. But, it looks like an MRI has cleared that up. For being in their mid 80’s, my grandparent’s are in very good health.
We ended up eating about 30 minutes or so after we arrived. But, before that, my step brother arrived. He and I didn’t talk much. But, we have never been very close. He looked a bit tired. And after the meal, he did fall asleep on one of the chairs in the family room.
The meal was great. And I was so proud of myself for pushing for being here for the meal. I don’t stand up for myself as much as I should. My sister is the one avoiding me. I shouldn’t have to suffer because of her choice. But, that is how the evening concluded.
But, I digress.
As I said, the meal was great. And although, I’m trying to lose weight, I did go back for seconds. I would also like to add that my sister’s families absence was felt. They were missed. It wasn’t the same without kids running around. And although we are having our differences now, I do love my sister and her husband. They are normally nice people. The dinner table was too small.
After dinner, my step dad disappeared to the kitchen. My mom chastised him and said that he had better not be doing the dishes. He said that he wasn’t. And quickly came back carrying a plate full of fudge. He put it down next to me, in a nod to an ongoing joke. A couple of years ago, I found out that marshmallows were an ingredient in fudge I hate marshmallows. But, I love fudge. I was able to abstain for one season. But, not much longer after that. So, my step dad teases me about that every time fudge is made.
Overall, the talk at the dinner table was nice and pleasant. But, my uncle started talking about some news I hadn’t heard about a family member’s health. My mom quickly saw the confusion on my face and apologized for not telling me. I hope everything works out.
Once someone stands up to clear their plate, it’s not to much longer before the whole table moves to the kitchen to help with the dishes. This is where my parent’s new kitchen really helps. It’s so much bigger than the other kitchen. Not only is there room for people to help. But, there is also room for others to stand around and talk. My job was to run newly dried glasses back to the china cabinet in the dining room.
Once we were all done, I knew my time was almost up. The guys retired to the family room to watch some football. My Grandmother and mom sat down in the living room to chat. And I started gathering my things. I had my backpack with me, since I wasn’t exactly sure what I would do with my evening after leaving. I chatted with my mom and grandmother for a few more minutes. But, then I remembered that I wanted to call my dad. I borrowed the house phone and called him. I wasn’t sure if he would pick up, since I was calling from my mom’s phone. And sure enough, he forwarded the call to voice mail. I didn’t know if it was intentional avoidance. Or if he was busy with dinner or something else. I have been recently talking with my cousins in California. And I knew he would most likely be eating with them. I received an email the next day from my dad apologizing for missing my call.
My sister, The Saint ®, and her entourage, were scheduled to arrive at 4pm. And so, at 3:45pm, I “The Deviant One” made my exit. I didn’t tell my grandparents why I was leaving. I smiled and tried not to give them a clue as to unhappy I was about what was going on. As far as they know, everything is fine between The Saint and I. My mom told them that she and her family decided to have Thanksgiving at their house this year. And apparently my grandmother replied with “Oh, people do that, I suppose.”
Now, you may be asking yourself about now, how in the world did I leave? I don’t own a car. So, did I just walk away? No, my mom graciously let me borrow her car for the weekend. But, that didn’t mean that I would be leaving quietly. I chose to park near the entrance to the development for about 10 minutes. The Saint ® didn’t want to see me. But, I was determined to be seen. So, I sat there so they would have to drive by me. Call it my little act of rebellion. I wasn’t sure if they drove by. I sat there, with my head down looking at my phone, catching up on Twitter and Facebook. When I was sure that I had made my point, I drove off.
From my parents house, I spent a few minutes driving through my old stomping grounds. I don’t get up there very often. So, I figured that I would use this opportunity to look around. I drove by the store where I used to work. Although they were closed, someone had left the “Open” sign on. And I knew that my ex-girlfriend had moved away. So, for the first time in several years, I drove by the house we used to call home. It looked like it was still vacant. And a sign on the front window read that it was owned by a property management company. It was so erie again standing where so many good and bad memories had occurred. I have to tell her, the next time I talk with her, that I liked the paint choices she made in the main level. But, what is up with the ruined carpet on the stairs? Ah, memories.
From there, a friend had told me I was welcome to come to her house for the rest of the evening. But, I had a hard time walking in. It was a little bit of social anxiety. And a little bit that it felt weird crashing her family occasion at her in-laws her house. So, after hemming and hawing about it for a little while, I told her I couldn’t go in. I apologized and thanked her for the invite. I hope she understood. She’s been a great friend of late.
From there, I drove to work. Yep. That’s right. I went to work. I didn’t want to go home and face questions from the roommate who thought I wouldn’t be back until later in the evening. So, I went to the store to hang out. I had my computer. So, I set that up in the office and hung out in front of the computer. No matter what, I was going to stop by there any way. We feed a stray cat every night. So, after putting some food out for him, I went back inside and tried to console my feelings about having to leave my family occasion early to avoid conflict with my sister, The Saint. I think I hung out there for about 5 hours or so. At first, I was a little down. I was beating myself up about not being able to walk into my friends house. And this whole thing with my sister was grating on me. But, after a couple of hours, I started to feel better. I had brought some popcorn and I stole a few sodas from the cooler (I paid for them the next day). And I eventually felt up to doing something I’ve been avoiding for some time. I worked on my voice. Here I was, alone. I might as well use this opportunity to do something I was dreading, but knew I should work on. I watched a few youtube videos on the subject. And walked around the dark, empty store practicing until my throat started to get sore.
I eventually decided that I should head home. It was getting late. I figured the roommate might be in bed. I only live about a mile from the house. Once I pulled into the driveway, I could see the lights were on. I walked in and although the dogs announced my arrival, I didn’t say anything to him. I wasn’t in the mood. I just headed to my room.
So, that’s how Thanksgiving 2011 went. It wasn’t as bad as I expected it to be. But, it wasn’t good either. I miss my sister. And I hope someday, she can understand why I’m doing this and find peace about it.