Tuesday, August 08, 2006

O Brother, Where Art Thou?

Going through some old photographs last night (part of the cleaning-up-the-basement project) and it hit me all over again how fast time goes. We all look different now. I found photos of me and M back when we were first dating. Here I thought he pretty much looked the same all these years, but nope, he's aging right along with me. I was a lot thinner then, too, and I remember worrying about my weight back then. Some things never change. Now I'd kill to get back into those faded jeans.

Found some photos of my brother, and I realized that he's never met his niece. I wonder if he ever thinks about her, wonders about her, wonders how she's doing. I'm so confused, still, with how everything went south with him (and his wife). Not quite sure, to this day, what exactly I did that was bad enough to warrant being cut out of his life. If I had an explanation, maybe I could just let it go. But no one seems to know. It's bad enough that I've lost my brother, but my heart breaks for the fact that Zoe has never met her uncle, and it doesn't look like she will any time soon.

That's what I was thinking last night. He's missed a whole year of her. A whole year. He'll never get that back. Her first year is almost over and he missed it. Then my sadness turns to anger. He chose to miss a whole year of her. I don't care what I did or didn't do to him...Zozo didn't do a damn thing to him and yet she's being punished for my sins.

Anger quickly turns back to sadness. I miss him, too. I miss his wicked funny sense of humor. I miss just hanging out with him. I think about him a lot, although it's getting easier and easier to forget him with every passing day. Now, mostly, I just think about him at major life milestones. Like first birthdays.

I used to not understand how family members could have divisive rift that lasted years. And now, here I am, right in the middle of one of those rifts. And I'll be damned if I don't know what I did wrong or how it all really happened. Apparently it's all my fault, though. M says I should just stop thinking about it, because it's impossible to figure out as I've actually done nothing wrong. It's not like this is our crappy old neighbors or anything, though. This is my brother. Zoe's uncle. How am I ever going to explain this to her when she grows up? I can't hide the fact that she has an Uncle Matt who chooses not to be a part of her life. So how do I tell her that Mommy did something so wrong that Uncle Matt doesn't want to see her anymore? And how do I explain that Mommy doesn't even know what it is she did?

And how do I do this without my heart breaking and tears pouring out of my eyes, when I can't even type this and keep myself together?


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