Monday, February 9, 2009

Peace in the Family?

When we were up in New York in October for what was our last visit with my grandmother, she was rather emphatic that there be peace in the family before she died. We're not a feuding family, but we have one particular family member that is just quirky/irritating enough that we tend to exclude him from certain gatherings. He is rude, obnoxious and generally not pleasant to be around. He is, however, my relative and so there are times when you just have to suck it up and deal with him.

So on this last visit, and I think I had told the story before, but my frail little grandma who had to use a walker just the day before, dragged me (sans walker) in to a room to tell me that she had invited this person to join us for dinner and she didn't care if that made me mad or not but she wanted peace in the family before she died! Lots of pep that day!

Well in order to keep peace for grandma's sake, everyone put in an effort to include this person in as much as possible. It was what grandma wanted and I think one of the reasons she held on as much as she did was to be sure that everyone was getting along. I think everyone really and truly tried and for a little while all was well.

With grandma gone now, life is returning to normal - meaning this individual is off his good behavior and basically acting like a brat. A big, old, brat. A big, old, ANNOYING brat. The family is trying to organize a memorial service for grandma and when this ...person (and I use the term loosely) was informed that he would have to contribute to it (financially - because he is a CLOSE relative) he started making a stink! He's starting to make waves because he is cheap. Now before you go all devils advocate on me, I am aware of these tough economic times and all but his man is not poor. Never has been. He is cheap. Big, big difference. He is trying to claim that he is being excluded from getting money that grandma left. She had none. She had no insurance, she lived very simply. If he had bothered to be an active part of her life, he would have known this but instead he wants to sit back and lay claim to money that isn't there so that he can GAIN from grandma's death. I wish stoning people in the streets was still a common practice.

Now the memorial is up in the air because it is unfair for three people to shoulder all of the preparing, hosting and paying for such a thing while the fourth just comes and takes. Shame on him for even thinking that this were acceptable. Shame on him for making all of grandma's wishes be for nothing. But most of all, shame on him for not honoring the life of a woman who gave him all that she had. I wish that we could all honor grandma's last wishes but some people in this world just make it impossible to have peace with.

Six hundred miles away and it's still not far enough!

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