blue moon (2)

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Another Strand ©

As we were gathering Saturday for my Bbq another strand was unravelling 5000 miles away.
My father’s sister is lying in a hospital bed gravely sick.
She knows she is sick but doesn’t know why because over there they don’t tell the patient unless the family says to do it.
It is thought that they patient would only get worse if they know what is causing them to be sick.
In her case it’s cancer and her time is just about out.

I don’t think I would like to be kept in the dark about something like this and I would want to know I am at the end of my rope so I could enjoy what little time I have left with those I am leaving behind as much as possible until I am gone forever.

Like my last post this is just another aspect of a different culture where secrecy is prudent as opposed to being forthcoming and letting the one person who is most effected by these events to decide how they want to live the last few moments they have on the face of this earth.

The other side of this coin is that my father and his sister have not spoken in over 40 years because my father has disowned her for something that happened 45 years ago.
I remember she once came to Canada and showed up at our front door to see my father.
When my father open to see whom it was, he closed it in her face without saying a word when he saw it was his sister.
My mother did go out after to see her because she is or was married to my mother’s brother whom was murdered 3 years ago in the woods, that’s another story.

My aunt cried to my mother on the front steps until my other uncle came and picked her up, my mother then went in and she told my father he was being mean but he had nothing more to say on the subject and it’s been that way ever since.

Now his sister is dieing and even though he doesn’t say anything about it I can see his senses perk up when he hears her name mentioned and doesn’t say anything when my mother calls Greece to see how she is doing.
He doesn’t ever mention her name but I can’t believe he doesn’t care he is just letting his pride get in the way of family.

In fact pride is one of the most dangerous emissions we have.
As much as pride gives us inner strength it can also blind us to many things.
A lot of the trouble in the Middle East is due to pride.
The leaders may have an agenda but the people; the sheep in their countries are fuelled on pride.
Pride of family, country and religion.
Their mindset is founded in the past and refuses to adjust even for some human compassion at times.

My old man is stubborn; this is one trait I have inherited from my father, stubbornness.
When I cut someone off I rarely tend to let them come back, in fact in most cases they are pretty much dead to me as I have proven in the past but you really have to fuck up for me to get to that stage.
I just don’t believe in giving a person another chance to fuck me over.
It’s like if someone walked up to you with a gun and shoots you through the heart, when he doesn’t succeed do you allow them the opportunity to do it again?
I rather not know if they exist or not but I don’t know if I would be able to do the same for a family member.

Family is different, it’s something we can’t choose and are born with; they are part of us.
I can see not talking to one for decades and then reuniting but to let them die without so much and acknowledging them at the last moment would be even worse than death.
He would have to live the rest of his life with that open wound.
I know my father, he is a stubborn man who does what he wants, how he wants and when he knows he is wrong he would never admit it but defend his position even knowing he is in the wrong.
Pride, that’s what it is.
To proud to admit he was wrong.
To proud to look around something to mend fences between family, he doesn’t have to forgive her for what he has disowned her for, he can still shun her act for all eternity if that’s what he wants but he should not let his sister die without at least letting her make peace with her big brother.

This is not something new for me because I have seen it before, mostly from hardcore traditionalists from the old country.
I have seen sons and daughters shunned because they didn’t marry who they were expected to and never brought back into the fold but left out in the cold.
I can’t imagine how someone would go that far with family unless it was some evil deed they were being ostracized for.

My father does talk to her son when he is down there so it’s not the whole family he ignores, just her.
He had business dealings with her husband, my mother’s brother but he would never speak to her, NEVER.

What she did to warrant this treatment I don’t know and if I did I would probably not share it here but knowing the way they think down there I bet it’s something small and stupid.
Maybe it’s just his stubborn Greek pride that’s the cause of it all.

Growing up in Canada I have experience many different customs, cultures through friends and family and have noticed that most ethnic cultures, particularly from the old countries from a generation ago were this way.

Those of us of our generation especially in the new world countries have eliminated it for the most part, there still is some but as time progresses it will be all gone with every passing generation until it become an urban legend in the future but for now it looks like the old might win out and a life time of memories wasted.

Memories of little kids playing together.
Memories of war and hunger huddled together as death pounded outside the door
Memories of laugher and dance.
Memories of parents now gone
Memories lost forever.

Time does not heal all wounds, some remain to fester.

Have a nice day



Anonymous Boxer said...

It always amazes me what family can do to each other in the name of "love" or the lack of it at times. I'm sorry for YOUR loss of an Aunt. We are quickly becoming the "older generation" and the best we can do is set a better example for the next generation.

Nice post, today Walker.

BikerCandy said...

I just don't understand families sometimes. I know there are some things that are unforgivable, but they are few and very extreme. Things like molestation and abuse are unforgivable sins, even from family members. But beyond those two things, there is not much else I would disown a family member over. I hope your father comes to realize that life is short and he may regret not making peace with his sister before she goes. It sounds like he won't do that though if it's been 40 years already.

This is very sad, very sad indeed.

gab said...

I agree I would like to know as well. My mom didnt tell us girls and when we found out that she knew her time was limited we felt robbed. Of time we could have spent with her of the fact that she was sicker than we knew. She passed of Cancer as well.

PBS said...

That's so sad about your aunt and your dad. I would want to know if I was dying, to prepare, do and say last things, etc. When I married the first time, my dad would hang up the phone when I called the house for my mom. "I have no daughter" he would say. Yet we did reconcile when I was pregnant with my son.

Blazngfyre said...

I was "disowned" by my brother for almost 5 years, and it sucked.
It was over something stupid, and our relationship has never been the same.

As bikercandy said, abuse and/or molestation are the only reasons I can see disowning a family member.
But friends? Well, i'm very much like you, when i'm done, i'm done.
There is no discussion, and there are NO SECOND CHANCES!
"Foll me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me".
So I don't put myself in that position of being made a fool of.

Great post Walker!

Gypsy said...

What a sad business. It's hard to imagine anyone doing something so terrible as to warrant that treatment. I can't believe he closed the door in her face!! Pride can be so self defeating if not used wisely and I do hope that when the inevitable happens your father won't have to live with regrets over his stance. I could never live with all that anger and animosity in my soul. It would eat me up and destroy me. But then again I'm a sucker and that is my burden to bear.

Peter said...

A very thought provoking tale Walker, I would want to know when my time was up, not because I'm brave but I would like the chance to say goodbye to friends and family.
My father was the last of his generation when he died in 2001 and suddenly my sister and I were up very close to the top of the list of surviving family members.... a very sobering thought!!!!!!
A great shame if your fathers pride stops him reaching out to your aunt as her life ebbs away.

Dotm said...

I never thought it was worth what it takes out of yourself to keep holding a grudge that long. I hope your Dad speakes to his sister before it is too late. I hope he doesn`t wish he did after it is too late. My mother had two brothers who hadn`t spoken in over 15 years over something stupid. They made my Mother very happy at her 90th Birthday party when she saw them talking to each other.
My husband stopped talking to all his family when he was about 14 and his mother died and no one in his family took him in and he was put into a foster home. His Dad had died before his mother did. My Father helped me locate his only sister way up in Plattsburg and my parents took us there. His sister mentioned a bro living in Buffalo, so my Parents drove us there, but we didn`t find him. Later after we married, I was able to contact them and by the time we had been married a few years, Walt was back talking to all his Bro`s and his sis. He was glad he had given in and forgiven them. They all died before he did as he was the baby of the family.
Sorry about your Aunt being so sick. I hope she gets the chance to try and make things right with your father so she can go in peace.

patti_cake said...

Very very sad. I am trying more and more as I get older to be as forgiving as possible. Holding onto grudges hurts the holder as well as the grudgee.