There’s a lot I want to pack into this post. Sorry in advance– most of it won’t mean anything to anyone but me.
My sister has officially moved out.
I want to move out.
I miss Rachel.
I miss Jon.
School is becoming increasingly uninteresting.
I’m thinking of getting a new job.
Everyone around me has a life that’s settling. I don’t, and I know it’s because of my age. I really want school to be over, and I really need to make a lot of money.
My brother and his girlfriend are smoking on the lawn, and stepping out there reminds me of that night I got drunk for the first time. It also reminds me of countless nights spent on the balcony, on the deck, by the pool, near the garden, in the practice room. So many of my childhood memories revolve around family member’s houses. The smell of smoke reminds me of a beloved uncle, but makes me mad at another. I think about Uncle Stan so often. Nearly every day. I think on Uncle Andrew with bitterness, which maybe isn’t fair. He and I used to be close. He was endlessly funny, unapologetic, eclectic. He was my mom’s baby brother. I used to hear my mom howl with laughter when she was home for the day, and I knew she was on the phone with Uncle Andy. Then Uncle Stan died, and he went crazy. I remember one time, after he had lost it, he called the house. My mom had told me not to answer his calls, but she wasn’t home this time to stop me. He was crying and apologizing and asking to talk to my mom and saying “this is it.” I told him I loved him and that everything was going to be okay. He told me he loved me too and thanked me and said he wanted my mom to call him back. She didn’t, and that was the last time I ever heard his voice. A few months later, he was found on his floor in a coma. He hadn’t been eating– only drinking and taking pills for weeks. At the hospital, they put him on life support. He would open his eyes and sort of turn his head when we said his name, but he was mostly brain dead and couldn’t speak or move. Someone, I don’t know who, had to make the decision to take him off of life support. I was looking at him when life left his body. I really hope he got what he wanted. I know he just wanted to be with his brother again. He went selfishly, but he wouldn’t have been able to recognize that fact. He didn’t think about how his death would tear apart the rest of his siblings and drive his mom to lose her memory. I don’t know if I will ever forgive him, but I guess that doesn’t really matter. But I hope Uncle Andrew found Uncle Stanley again. I hope they’re smoking together and laughing and proud of the person I’ve become.
The memories of Chris and Roland have crept into my mind in the past week or so. I ventured out and read Chris’ blog back to when I broke up with him. There were a lot of mean things about me– things I know aren’t true. So it didn’t really bother me. But I was disgusted by some of the more vulgar things he had to say. One filthy post in particular made me dizzy with horror. I’ve never felt so disrespected and misrepresented. It put me in a state for an hour or two, but now I’m happier than ever that I don’t have to worry about him anymore. I still count that as the best decision I’ve ever made.
As far as Roland goes, he broke the surface of my memory about a week ago when I was laying in bed with Jon. I asked him, “If you could change one thing in your entire life, what would it be?” It got me to thinking about my own answer, and Roland was my first idea. My feelings on that front are still mixed. I don’t regret knowing him. I don’t regret my efforts to be his friend. However, I do regret the time I spent dwelling on him. I regret that I cared for so long where he went. I regret that I drove around his neighborhood, missing him and wishing he’d call or write. I regret spending so much energy and emotion wondering why he didn’t care enough to contact me. But it’s all in the past now. I honestly don’t know if I’d recognize his face if I saw him in the street. I’d know him from his hair and height and glasses. But his face is blurry now. I don’t get mad when I think of the way he treated our friendship anymore. I just wish I had known back then what the future would hold.
I admire Rachel and Jon and my sister so much. They all share the amazing ability to have a goal, then accomplish it (and accomplish it WELL). Rachel has moved past huge emotional hurdles and managed to be wildly successful at her job, and still not break down from the stress. Jon continually runs into life problems and solves them with the solidity of stone. He never lets anything slip by unresolved. My sister has determination unbounded. She works and works and works and hardly ever complains. She has experienced life’s unfairness, yet her generosity outshines anyone else’s. I’m so proud of all three, and I wish I could be more like them. I feel ashamed and stuck sometimes being surrounded by such tenacious people. But I’m so lucky to know and love them.