Pleasantly Surprised

United States
August 24, 2011 5:34pm CST
My relationship with my family has never been as good as I would like it to be. Oftentimes my older siblings have daunted me to the point of making me a nervous wreck. They have a tendency to ignore my thoughts and ideas and make me feel like an afterthought. After all, I'm just a little kid, right? LOL My younger sister and I never look forward to any family gathering because we are so left out...at the gatherings as well as the rest of the time...and we always feel like we really are not wanted there, just need to be there to make the family "complete" on the surface. Despite all of this, however, I seem to have made some positive impressions on some of my nieces and nephews. Last week my sister's oldest daughter got married. Normally I would never even consider going on a trip all the way to Utah (I live in Oregon and it is an 8.5 hour drive) for several reasons. First, the trip alone is hard on me, physically due to my arthritis and fibromyalgia. Unless I am able to lie down most of the way, there is no way I can make it. The other consideration, of course, is financial. I certainly don't have the funds to travel that distance, no matter what kinds of discounts I manage to get. But sometimes my family surprises me and this was one of those times. My niece was insistent that she wanted me there for her wedding so her mother worked it out with another sister of ours to get me there. Since my sister drove, I was able to lie down in the back seat most of the way, minimizing my pain. She also did not ask for any funds to help with gas or anything. I have a wonderful sister. Of course, this is the same sister who has been helping me fix up my trailer and put my windows in. Once I got there, my niece was ecstatic to see me, which was a real boost to my morale. Although my body caved on me, everyone was so helpful that I was able to make it through the ceremony, luncheon and reception. I had a lovely time chatting with my niece and her new husband and came home with a wonderful memory that I will cherish for the rest of my life. Sometimes family, even when you don't think they care much, can surprise you and they really come through. All in all, I am so glad I was able to go on this trip. It went a long way toward healing my relationships with several members of my family and it was good to see some members that I had not seen in many years. I will always be grateful for the kindnesses that my family showed me while on this trip and it was well worth the pain I suffered. Have you had any experiences like this? Or is your family one of those lucky close-knit ones that never have any rifts?
3 responses
@RitterSport (2452)
• Lippstadt, Germany
27 Aug 11
hi dear alaskanray, I am glad things turned out so well for you when it comes to family. I am glad to read they have been so helpful when you were there for the wedding. That sounds wonderful. Here it has been quite the opposite the family has exhausted me in times of trouble with their demands piling up high and higher. So now as the situation has changed and the trouble is over and done with I have cut ties with them as well as I could and I am the happiest person on earth cause I was so brave.
1 person likes this
• United States
27 Aug 11
Sorry to hear, Ritter. Sometimes family is just impossible to deal with. I come from a large family and have always been on the timid side when it comes to crowds so you can imagine the hives I get when the entire family is there...and they are all strong personalities, too! I cannot tell you how many times I have been completely ignored simply because of my family dynamics. Trying to be heard is a challenge and sometimes we just have to go with the flow and let that wave wash over us, then get on with our own lives.
• Lippstadt, Germany
27 Aug 11
dear alaskanray, dont be sorry please, cause for at least 30 years I have longed to cut ties and now I have done it and it feels like being released of decades of prison......
1 person likes this
• United States
28 Aug 11
It is still sad that your family isn't there for you. Family is the most important relationships we can have and to lose that is still sad...although at times necessary for our sanity.
@mensab (4206)
• Philippines
25 Aug 11
yes, our family can always surprise us pleasantly. and it is always a welcome surprise. i really like your story. one of those that make mylot really a good venue for sharing personal stories that can move people. our family will always be our strength and support in our struggles. i have experienced it and will always see it that way.
• United States
25 Aug 11
Sounds like you have a good family relationship. I'm happy for you. Keep it up. I heard a talk once where the speaker told us that there are three things we take with us when we die: 1) knowledge, 2) character and 3) relationships so these are the three things that should conceivably be the most important in our lives. I pray that we all may have a wealth in each of these categories.
@ElicBxn (60894)
• United States
25 Aug 11
I can't say that we have any rifts, but my brother and I don't get along. I'm sure he would say its ALL my fault, and I'll take some of that fault, but I would say that more of it is his... of course, he thinks he can do no wrong...
1 person likes this
• United States
25 Aug 11
lol...don't we all. It seems to me that we all have our own perspectives and that is what causes the different problems in relationships. My biggest problem with my sisters is that they don't talk things out. They just let them fester and if I try to talk out a problem with them then I get censured severely and told that I don't know what I'm talking about. Basically I'm not allowed to say "ouch" when they step on my feelings. If they would just talk things out with me, I'm sure many of our misunderstandings would be worked out. Instead, though, they prefer to invalidate me as a person rather than apologize or explain or work things out with me as an equal. Such is the lot of a "little kid" in a family full of "big kids", I guess.
1 person likes this