Friday, December 17, 2010


Those of you who read my blog and know me well know that my mother is still very much alive, 90 years old , lives in Indiana in a lovely Senior Community. Mother still drives, cooks, bakes for her friends, shops, goes out socially, and even babysits my Aunt, her 91 year old sister that lives with her son & DIL, when they go somewhere too hard to take her. The two sisters have a pajama party of sorts, make cookies, eat and play Bunco. It does the heart good to know they have such fun together still.

My Aunt, now a widow had three children, one daughter and two sons. Her family always seemed quite close and never moved from Indiana. After my Uncle passed away one son took his mother in where she is treated with the greatest respect and love. They all meet every Christmas Eve at one brothers home and celebrate together with all the other relatives in town.

My mother's question to me was: why don't my children get along with one another?
All except my son have moved away from Indiana to far away places. She wishes just once before she dies we could all be together in a loving way. Unfortunately my mother worked from the time I can remember. She worked from 3:00 in the afternoon until 10:00 p.m. at night. I would get home from school to serve dinner to my two sibblings that mother had pretty much prepared before she went to work. My dad worked three shifts in the Steel Mill, so was there only a part of the time. As trhe eldest, I became babysitter, missed after school activities and resented my sibblings because of it. They in turn resented me for being able to boss them around as they put it. But even worse; my parents hated one another, my mother was verbally abused, and my father was sick in the head with jealously, for no reason. We kids grew up with few expressions of love. None ever between our parents. I believe most children learn from what they are shown by their parents. Coldness breeds coldness, and then my other two sibblings (sisters) came so late in life. One nine years after the three of us, (brother, me & my sister) then another when I was married and pregnant. My baby sister was born four months after my own son. I never really knew her and we are basically still strangers. I moved away to Illinois then Las Vegas, my two younger sisters married and moved to Colorado. My one sister stayed in Indiana but passed away early in her life from complications from MS. My brother has Epilepsy and lived all his life with my mother until he recently got his own apartment in a building next to my mother. They have their own places but she still has to drive him everywhere and keeps a close eye on him. So my answer to my mother is that children mostly imitate what they see, and feel growing up. I longed to be closer to my mother like my girlfriends were with their moms but my mother HAD TO WORK. . .

The strange thing is I did exactly the same thing to my own two sons, work, work and work even more and now I am reeping what I have sewn, alone on the holidays; my sons in the same town but busy elsewhere. So you see history repeats itself and that is not always a good thing. Would my sons or sibblings be any different if circumstances had been different? I don't know, and guess I never will. . .



  1. I'm not so sure it is all of that. My family is separated as well with my 90 year old mother in Iowa, my brother in Illinois, my sister in Minnesota. I have my oldest daughter and grandson here but my youngest daughter and three grandchildren are in Arkansas and so we won't be having the big family gathering we used to have. Now, our biggest problem is the employment, high cost of gas to travel and the weather.
    Families used to stay in one place but as times changed, they did too, branching out until they are separated now.
    And I wonder if the times and maybe conditions have changed so the younger generation has lost that feeling of family togetherness.
    I'm like you, this Christmas will be more of memories past than new ones made. I hope that you do have a Merry Christmas and that we all can look forward to a better New Year.

  2. I agree with Barb - it isn't always family dynamics. The world is a much different place than it used to be - I'm not sure if that's a good or a bad thing; probably a combination of both. Anyway, have a wonderful Christmas and a Happy New Year.

  3. Thank you both so much for your comments. I agree the world is a much different place than when I was growing up, it has changed dramatically, even from when my kids were growing up, and I will say not for the better!. I guess it is what it is and since we can't go back we best learn to live with things the way they are. I have a nice life for the most part, good friends, and am not complaining, just sharing a thought...

  4. You're situation has lots of company. Many of us
    are alone on the Holidays even though we have
    children. Work related issues cause some of the
    gap; and relationship issues cause some of the
    gap; and complicated life issues cause the rest.
    Guess we have to be grateful for what we do have. Thanks for sharing where you're at. God bless!