I expect that this post will find me rambling quite a bit and quite possibly I may not make sense here and there......you, my faithful reader(s), are just going to have to handle it however you can. Sorry.
Today was my last Sunday as a resident of the state of Wisconsin. I'm not quite sure how I feel about that. That fact didn't occur to me until I was driving around after dinner with Little Man. We had eaten at Pizza Hut, something we don't normally do. It's not that I dislike Pizza Hut or anything...it's just not something we do a lot. Anyway, I decided to take a short drive after dinner and that turned into almost an hour of driving around in the car.
I talked to my cousin today. She's my dad's half-sister's youngest daughter (but the middle child of that family).....so, she's my aunt's daughter. Anyway, I talked to her for a little bit (seriously, it was maybe five minutes) and I conveyed one thing to her: if anything happens on that side of the family, someone needs to tell me (her, her mom, grandma, etc.).
What set that off?
Well, after I dropped Husband off at the airport last Wednesday (the Fourth of July), I called my grandma (my dad's step-mother and said cousin's maternal grandma). I hadn't talked to her in awhile and hadn't yet told her we were moving to California. So, we talked for a bit and then she asked if I had heard anything from my dad.
Um........no. My dad and I have not spoken since before Husband and I got married in August 2009. I had a blog entry on my old blog that went into the whole damn thing (and honestly, it was a big messy thing)...but I deleted that blog and everything in it. Let's just say that my dad is a dickhead. He hasn't even bothered to see his only grandson. Honestly, I'm not 100% sure he knows of his existence.
Anyway, no, I haven't talked to dad...and grandma knows the gist of the story so this wasn't a huge shock to her or anything. Apparently, my dad's girlfriend called my aunt (my dad's half-sister) to tell her that my dad had a stroke. Why she called my aunt instead of my grandma is a mystery to me. But, she told my aunt who, in turn, informed my grandma. Grandma asked if I knew anything about it...and obviously, as I haven't talked to them, I was completely unaware.
Then the little voice in my head crept in....."do you really care?"
I hate do admit this because it makes me sound like a horrible person but after all the bullshit I've been through with my dad, because of my dad, and because of his actions (or inaction).....I don't really care.
My dad had a stroke and I don't really care.
There. I said it.
What really bothers me, though, is that no one bothered to tell me in the first place. I know, that doesn't make any sense....I don't care but I do care. The guy is still my father and as much as I hate him for everything that has happened, at the end of the day, he is still my father. Do I think he deserved to have a stroke? No. I don't think anyone deserves that. Do I think it's his own damn fault? Yes. He doesn't take care of himself and, honestly, I'm not surprised by it.
When I told Husband about it, he asked me a very serious question: if my dad dies, am I going to fly back to Wisconsin for his funeral?
This dredges up memories of when my grandpa died in 2002 (my dad's dad). When grandpa died, my dad flatly refused to go to his funeral. Dad's girlfriend and I went but he wouldn't go. His reason? His father treated him like shit his entire life, basically abandoned him at the beginning of his teenage years (and his younger brothers), and did nothing to remedy the situation; why would he want to go? Both my dad's girlfriend and I tried to talk him into going because he was his father but he wouldn't budge.
So, now I'm faced with the same. My dad treated me like shit my entire life, basically abandoned me, and did hardly anything to remedy the situation...finally cutting me out of his life completely. If he died, would I fly back to Wisconsin to go to his funeral?
This brings up a bunch of other things in my head. No one bothered to tell me he had a stroke; do I really expect that anyone will tell me that he died? I don't do well with funerals for family members, particularly if they're immediate family. What kind of reception would I get? Would I be shunned? Would I even be mentioned? I can't imagine that my dad's girlfriend would be so cruel as to outright snub me in the obituary but, then again, no one bothered to tell me he had a stroke and that woman can hold a grudge.
I don't know that I would go to the funeral. I expect that I might come home long enough to say, "bye dickhead, thanks for nothing."
Then again, who knows?
As these thoughts passed through my head, I took a drive to the trailer park where my dad and his girlfriend used to live...up until around 2007. Currently, my half-brother lives there.
There's another whole mess.
Brother is about six and a half years younger than I am, the result of my dad's marriage to the awful bitch that broke up my parents' marriage in the first place (not his current girlfriend). I have no nice words for that woman. I'd say the only good thing to come out of her was Brother...but I'm not even sure about that sometimes.
Brother and I, despite living less than 20 miles apart our entire lives, only saw each other once a year at Christmas. My mother invited them (my dad, my half-brother, and my now-ex step-mother) to our home every year, along with my grandparents (dad's dad and step-mom). My mother was a fabulous, classy woman, no doubt.
Anyway, Brother and I hardly know each other and I was also a bit older than he was, which may also have something to do with it.
Sometime in the mid-2000s, Brother and I had a huge falling out (it was after 2002 but before 2006 so I'm thinking around 2004). Our dad didn't talk to him for at least two years because of that. It's the only time in my life that I can remember my dad siding with me about anything.
Since then, we've sort of repaired what little relationship we had. He even came to our wedding reception, something I was not expecting given that he and our dad were on good terms by then and dad and I were not.
But...things are still strained with us. I haven't seen him since our wedding reception and that was almost three years ago. Keep in mind that he lives only a five minute drive from us. I've only met his fiance' once or twice. He has yet to meet his nephew, though he has seen pictures.
With us moving to California, I thought, perhaps, he'd like to see his nephew. I e-mailed him about six weeks ago and said, in short, that we were moving, would he like to come over and meet his nephew before we left? He said that would be fine and he could probably swing over after work one day...
Well......we're leaving in less than a week and it hasn't happened. In fact, we haven't spoken since that e-mail.
So.......we were driving and went past the trailer where Brother and his fiance' currently live. We didn't stop. I thought about it, really, but there were a couple of unfamiliar vehicles in the driveway and one of them could have been his mother (someone I have no desire to ever see again) or it could have been our dad...so, no stopping. But I spent some time crying. I don't know what bothered me about the whole thing but I did cry.
And then I started thinking.......people that deserve apologies, people that I should make amends with, people I don't give a damn about, people I'd like to tell off.....
But....back to my cousin. I called her and left her explicit instructions for either her, her mom, her sister, or grandma to call me if something happens again. If my dad dies, I'd like to be able to make a decision about whether I go to his funeral instead of having it made for me by not being informed in the first place. If my grandma dies or has something happen to her...or my aunt, for that matter, I'm pretty sure neither my dad or my half-brother would bother telling me. So, my cousin has instructions to keep me informed.
Not that she will.
And then I started thinking of my life, growing up in southern Wisconsin...the kind of life I've lived and the kind of life I want to live, the kind of life I want for Little Man and the kind of life he'll have in California.
I cried. A lot.
This is my home. I've never moved very far from home. College was just 150 miles to the west and I knew I always would come home.
But now.......now I'm faced with moving across the country and calling someplace else my home and I'm not sure I can handle it. I feel like I'll never be back here again so I need to make sure everything is fixed and done in the manner I want. Hence the thoughts about apologies and amends and telling people to poo off.
I don't even know where to start. The only thing I can seem to do is cry. Little Man gave me lots of hugs and kisses because he knew I was sad. I only have a week left and I don't know what to do.
With that said, I'm going to have to go to bed soon........