And yeah, it feels pretty freakin good. Oh, what am I talking about? I'm talking about the fact that this summer has been a momentous one for my family, we've reunited with my brother, his wife and their kiddos. See, 6 years ago, my brother met and quickly married a woman that we didn't know. Without getting into a bunch of petty shit that no one even remembers, I'll just say there was a lot of drama. A lot of miscommunications. A lot of (pardon my Limp Bizkit) he said, she said bullshit.
What resulted was something I never thought would happen. My brother, who I had been so close to my whole life, became estranged from the majority of our huge family. He still spoke to our parents but things were definitely strained. Six years past of us barely talking. And a lot happened in that time. My sister-in-law gave birth to two sons and obviously I had Gabe. None of us knew each other's kids. Dude, it sucked. But a combination of anger, hurt feelings and stubbornness on all sides kept this rift going. There had been a few attempts at getting past this but for one reason or another, nothing ever happened.
After our oldest brother almost died last fall, there seemed to be a chance for reconciliation. Imminent death will do that to people, make them realize that all of the petty shit isn't worth not speaking to your family. So after my brother recovered, my two brothers began their new relationship. I sat back and watched, waiting for my turn. I wanted my brother back, but I didn't want all of the drama and the dredging up of the past all the time. I didn't want to be reminded of something crappy I said years ago and likewise, I didn't want to harbor bad feelings towards anyone for the rest of my life. So I watched my brothers become brothers again and I waited.
This past Mother's Day, my grandmom asked all of us to get together. We were all present but just like random events in the past, we just steered clear of each other. Sure, it was awkward but we did it anyway. We watched our children play with each other, mostly around their Gigi and yet, not even know each other. Weird, eh? Well that night, I got an email from my SIL, apparently finally coming around, asking for us to all meet up with each other. I was shocked. And since I had been drinking, John advised me to wait unil the next day to answer. So I did. And of course, my answer was a resounding (yet cautious) yes.
Soon after, we all met up at our older brother's house and instead of hashing things out or bringing up the past, we all decided to forget all of the bullshit and move on. Start fresh if you will. There were hugs and tears and promises. And since that night in early June, my brother and me? We're like peas and carrots again. (obvi said in F. Gump voice) His wife? I actually like her! It's nothing but pure craziness. I think we all agree that we could kick ourselves for waiting so long. But we're not dwelling on that, there's too much to catch up on. The best part about it is that our boys are all too young to know any different. They've got new cousins and they love each other already. Gabe has two more boys, who are 3 and 5, to play and grow up with.
Gabe and Gavin
Gabe and his (new) cousins Gavin and Shane
Rain Delay (womp, womp)
To say I'm happy is an understatement. We've done holidays and get-togethers and birthdays and vacations and play dates and every time we spend time together, a little piece of what we had comes back. And of course, all of us together thrills my mom to no end. It's been hell for her and I'm sad that it had to happen at all. It's always a bit embarrassing telling someone you don't speak to another family member, because I assume they're thinking, that's immature, why can't you get your shit together?? And I always hated hearing people, thinking they know best, tell me to get over it, that it's not worth it, it's family! they'd say. Like I don't know that? We've all got our family shit to deal with and if my family needed this time, then I guess we did. But man, am I happy it's over.