Sunday, July 16, 2006

On 'Vacation', Part 1

So, things are CRAZY! I am on ‘vacation’. We arrived here in Louisiana last Monday. We have been here for a week now. I have been to Target (TWICE!), Wal-Mart (more times than I can count), eaten at Olive Garden and finished a term paper, a midterm and an essay. OH, I’ve also attended TWO baby showers! And today I have a shrimp po-boy, crab stew and boiled crabs! YUM! Things are going fairly well. There hasn’t been much drama or conflict with my sisters yet. I’ve received two emails from Mike as well as two phone calls. The kids are having a great time. They are loving the fact that COUSINS live just around the corner! They slept at my sister’s house last night. All three kids!! It was, um, weird! to not have them here with me. But nice because I was able to finish my mid-term in relative peace.

Of course, this wouldn’t be ‘home’ without drama. The drama is between my Mom’s family. My Grandmother is sick. She has four children. Oldest Uncle Son, Oldest Daughter, My Mom, and Youngest Son. Youngest Son has everything handed to him by Maw Maw (my grandmother). He works, makes good money, and does drugs. He has NOTHING to show for his life. She pays his truck note, insurance and provides a place for him to live and food to eat. He does nothing for her. Oldest Son lives next door. His wife runs over to help Maw Maw numerous times a day. They give her all her insulin shots as well. Oldest Daughter doesn’t come around. Hasn’t in about 2 months. My Mom lives around the corner from Maw Maw. Since I have been home I have witnessed everyone talk about the issues with Youngest Son. I have listened as stories get passed back and forth. This one says one thing and the other reports it to someone else. It’s like that game in school where you whisper something to the person next to you and by the time it reaches the last person, the story has changed so much it hardly recognizable. It amazes me that no one will tell Maw Maw all the drama going on behind the scenes. It also amazed me that Maw Maw is so blind she can’t see how her son is draining everything she has right from under her.

I don’t handle conflict very well. It is hard for me to be here witnessing all of this taking place. I want to sit everyone down and make them see what I see. But I know that is not realistic. And I am sure there is more to this than I what I am aware of. It is just so hard to watch the drama unfold. Knowing how much it hurts my Mom.

This trip has been eye opening for me. I’ve come to realize that my family has changed in the thirteen years since I moved away. So many things are still the same. But my family isn’t the same as it was when I left. Or maybe it is and I have just changed so much I am viewing them all through different eyes. I can feel something inside of me changing. The past month has been a time of personal growth for me. It isn’t something I can point out, but I know some changes are happening. I am becoming more aware of a lot of things around me. There is a lot of change happening in my life right now. I feel it’s a time of redirecting my priorities.

With Mike being gone I have been thinking a lot more about where I want my life to go. It’s easy to settle into a routine when we are together and not think too far into the future. With this deployment, I find I am more focused on our long-term goals. I see where I want us to be and I am working on getting us there.

Ok, I have so many more things going through my mind right now. It is hard to capture them all and get them down. I’ll write more later, but wanted to at least start to write about the things going on.

I’ll close with a crappy thing that happened to me on Friday. My Mom, my Sister, her daughter, my other neice, my three kids and I were getting ready to go out to eat breakfast. As I was loading the kids into the truck my sister says “You aren’t going anywhere in that truck”.. I looked down and my tire was FLAT! To the RIM, flat! We used my Mom’s car the rest of the day. The next day I got the tire fixed. Hopefully it holds up for a LONG time!! But man, what a crappy way to start the day!

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