We were supposed to be discussing what we are doing for the last week of Summer Vacation…huh?
The Fox who made the topics for the last few months could not have known that school starts here at the beginning of August and that all heck would break loose at my house at the end of this month.
Last week #2 Son went out of state to a training seminar for his job, so I have had the grandson almost constantly, which is not anything new but at the same time #1 Son was called-up to fight wildfires. Yes. He has done it before. He has been fighting fires since he was 18 and informed me that the wildfires are no more dangerous than what he had been doing all along. Except for the fact that he almost had the burning roof of a restaurant fall on him, (and others), a few years back, I still think it is. But, there you have it. I also had to take major duty with his little girls. So I had 3 cousins,10 and under…and last week a full moon…yet, I remain to tell the tale.(So far, so good.)
Then we have my father-in-law who has been quite ill and failed quickly. My husband rushed two states away to be at his bedside and stay for all of his siblings to arrive for the funeral, well, most of them. My husband has 14 full brothers and sisters and one half-sister; she and another brother did not attend. Nor could I. I have known the family since 1976 and been part of it for nearly 31 years, but I stayed behind for the grandkids. I had planned to go when the time came. My father-in-law lived near where I grew up, and I have not been back there in 32 years. So the husband has used up vacation time from work, (along with 3 day bereavement leave), to be with his siblings, and communicating with more of the family. I have spent many hours on the phone or Facebook messaging with his,(our), family members, close and extended, which has been a comfort to me. My father’s family did not have a reunion this year, nor did I get to visit my mother’s home state and the family remaining there as I had planned, but we have a big wedding next year there that I am looking forward to. This year was the in-laws’ turn.
The visit seems to be doing my husband a lot of good. He has gotten closer to those with whom he had been out-of-communication and rekindled fraternal feelings with the same. It has also done a lot of good for him to see the youngest ones no longer as little kids, which is where his thoughts used to go when he’d get calls and email from them. Most of those girls, who he used to picture with in their little dresses for their First Communions, are now grandmothers. Many of the ‘boys’ are grandfathers; the next youngest has 9 children… the youngest ‘boy’ is a strapping, 6’1″ policeman. My husband needed to see this, them as they truly are now, all at the same time.
He went out eight years ago for his mother’s funeral, but it was for a shorter time and everyone was in an uproar. No one knew what to do,(she died pretty suddenly), and then the estate had to be divided. She left ambiguous instructions and problems ensued.
Those feelings and facades remained during the trip he took out there for a visit last year when his dad was really slowing down. He met with some of the other ‘kids’ then, but not in this soul-baring state, and this time there is no estate here to divide, as his father leaves a second wife. My husband has become better friends with the wife and befriended her daughters, whom he had never met .One has a lifestyle with which he had been, shall we say, uncomfortable. He is at peace with it and gained understanding. He also came to terms with his father’s choices in life and accepted the man’s repentance for others. From what I gather, there have been a lot of cleansing tears shed by all. ( If you have stock in Kimberly –Clark, expect a big check with all the Kleenex used by the family this past week.)
So I guess although ‘vacation’ is not the word I’d use to describe the last week here, it has been exciting and refreshing.(And hopefully it will be restful, when The Firefighter returns.)
So, how was the end of your Summer?