How long does it take a heart to give up
I was sitting yesterday watching the baby rabbits play and remembered that I had a brother. It was the strangest thing.
I said it to myself and kept repeating, “I have a brother.” I think I was waiting for there to be some emotional response. Sadness? Curiousity? Anger?
I tried to feel something … anything.
I have a brother. I have a blue dress. I have a guitar. The grass is green. 2 + 2 = 4 . Facts that mean nothing.
I have a brother. He is not quite 14 months older than me. We survived our horrific childhood. He protected me. We were, at times, our only friends. We were in the same grade all through school, in the same classroom. We played most of the same sports, did many of the same things. We knew all of each other’s friends. We dated some. We got married within a year of one another. Our 4 children were born almost at the same times. His wife and I were best friends. We lived close to one another. We attended the same church. We are not friends. We are not close. We do not see one another. I have not spoken to him in years and have not really seen him in any meaningful way since we were kids.
I left home at 15.
I desperately wanted my brother. I needed him. I loved and adored him. I tried to be his sister. I tried to be there for him, to love him, to pretend it did not matter that he never called, never needed me, did not know anything about me. Somewhere along the years, I let go.
I know I disappointed him because I was not what he wanted me to be. I could not be what he called “normal.” I only knew how to be me and me was never good enough for any of my family.
We did not have any huge fights, there was nothing said. There was no big decision. Just somewhere along the way I stopped trying and he slipped away from my reality. He ceased to be.
Every person has the right to determine what their life will be and who they will connect to. We have no power over what another person decides. Many of us hang on and hope. We love. We hold special love for those that have a connection that binds us, but even those connections slip away, over time.
I don’t wonder about him. I don’t search for him on line to see what he is doing. I don’t perk up if his name is mentioned and if someone asks me about him, I really have nothing to say.
He is my brother.
Turns out, a brother has no more meaning in my life than does a mother or a father. I presume I have both of those as well but I know nothing about them. I may not even know who they are. Their impact on my life was brief to non existent. People let go. They survive. People who withhold their love from you, who remove themselves from your life are probably surprised to know that eventually . . . they do not matter. They may be surprised to know you are not standing there waiting . . .
Life moves on.
And people forget you and when something reminds them, they cannot find any emotion to define who you even were. I think that makes me feel sadder than it would if I felt sad and missed him.
I feel nothing.