Friday, November 27, 2015

My Brother Helped Me Grow Up Some Today

I had to tell my brother to leave this evening.

It was hard and so weird but I had to and I did it. He told me I was fucking crazy but he packed up and left.

It's all okay. He's a grown man. I'm a grown woman. And I refused to participate in the conflagration that was set, dry wood piled to the sky with gasoline poured all over it. I would not toss that match.
There's nothing in that sort of bullshit for me any more. I have nothing to prove and no one I need to prove it to.

And I am fine. When I went out to shut the chickens up, Nicey ran to me and let me scoop her up and hold her close to my old bosom where she sagged in relaxation and I petted and stroked her and set her gently on the roost and here I am, alone again in this house that shelters and holds me as gently as I held Nicey. Owen claims that Nicey is as nice as she is because he gave her that name.

Have I told you what he's planning on calling his sister as his own, special name for her?


What the hell have I got to feel bad about?

Not much. In fact, not a damn thing that matters.

I got Keith on the box and I'm about to eat some leftovers. I stretch and breathe in and out, and my boys are coming to see me tomorrow. I ain't no martyr and I don't need to wah-wah about any of it. In fact, I'm just grateful that I finally understood that I was not put here on this earth to protect anyone I did not give birth to.

My brother loves to quote Keith as saying, "Know thyself."

I came to know myself a little bit better today. I have dried my tears and stemmed my fears and as my husband says, "I ain't afraid."

I may have had a horrendous childhood but I've got this life now. And I will not be cowered into believing that I have to believe one fucking part of the lies and deceit of any of that house of horrors of my upbringing any more.

I guess I have to say I'm grateful to my brother for bringing me this realization, finally and at last.

Know thyself. Keith is right. Trust that. Ain't no one on this earth who has your story, your heart, your history, your feelings, your unique and powerful and meaningful presence on this earth. Don't let anyone tell you different. And if they try, tell them to pack their shit and get the hell out.

And don't feel bad about it.

Love...Ms. Moon


  1. The last few days I have been going over and over a thought that sort of applies here. Life is a crooked path. If it were straight we would have easy answers to every situation. This crookedness makes every decision have unlimited outcomes. It is like a Choose Your Own Adventure but worse. Or better.
    Today your brother may not fit into your life. Maybe he will tomorrow. Or maybe he won't. The only thing each of you can do it your best and try to protect your hearts.
    You have so much love around you and I hope your brother does too. Maybe you just have to let this one go and just be content in the love that you already have.

  2. Birdie- You know what? I have no interest in hoping my brother fits into my life any more. I have tried my entire life to make this relationship work. And none of it has helped. I'm completely out of fucks to give about it and I refuse to spend any more time with someone who tries to make me feel bad about my own extremely real feelings. He said last night that we are not here to make anyone else happy.
    He is right.
    I feel incredibly lightened. I love him. I always will but that has nothing to do with day-to-day life. He has chosen to live as far from our family as possible within the confines of the continental United States and I am FINALLY understanding that and respect it with all my heart.
    The love he may or may not have is not my concern.
    The love I have around me is. And it's good.
    And I know it.
    As the Dixie Chicks said in one of their songs- The beauty in just letting go.
    It's weird. I really feel as if I have reached some epiphany tonight. It feels good.

  3. love you.

    having come from a thanksgivng where I haven't seen most of my family in almost a decade and where there is hurt so deep it bleeds all the time, without stopping, where I want to love everyone despite the fact they hate each other:

    glad you spoke your truth and I suspect your brother spoke his. It's like Keats said, about negative capability: the ability to hold opposing thoughts together, though they are contradictory.--

    None of this shit is easy. Truth, whatever the fuck that is, is fluid. But we are allowed our own truth, even if it contradicts our siblings truth. Love can perservere over the great divide, even if we cannot.

  4. Ah, this sounds like a good, strong, peaceful place!

  5. Ramona- One of the things I did say to my brother was about how I have spent a lifetime being told how I should and should not feel.
    Fuck that.
    No one has the right to tell us that. And when we talk about love, we have to include love for ourselves. Because if that's not there, the rest is meaningless.

  6. I love you Ms. Moon. There is so much that you go through and that you've been through that I can directly relate to. When you write so honestly it helps me, especially around the holidays. Holidays are hard because it is "supposed " to be around family but my two sisters have nothing to do with me so my friends are my family. Even though I have many close friends, sometimes I feel so sad about that. But it is what it is and I am grateful for the wonderful friends I have in my life that take me in as if I was part of their family. Why can't siblings from families like ours bond? Was it just too hard? I have tears for you and me and others in these situations.

  7. I'm proud of you for doing what your spirit needed. I'm glad you're at ease about it. This may come and go, but I know you did what felt right and true and that is the best we can ever do. Lovelovelove.

  8. I am proud of you. It sometimes takes many years to develop the courage to do what is necessary. You are surrounded by a loving family and kindred spirits out here in internet land! Your words are a gift to me.
    Lisa from Michigan

  9. We all have to draw our line in the sand sooner or later.

  10. My dearest Sister Moon,

    I awoke early this morning and felt lulled to this place to read. And wow, I am so glad that I did. I love you. I love your authenticity, your self awareness, and your strong arms that pull the hell out of those bootstraps of yours. If anyone "knows thyself" it is thee. I learn so much from you. About love, about awareness, about life, about me. All as you so seamlessly share about you. I want you to know this morning that I appreciate you. I appreciate this post and I appreciate your transparency so much. You make us all a little braver.

    Love, Kimberly

  11. i feel you and hear you, all that is said and unsaid.

    gives a new meaning to being thankful...


  12. *Enormous big hug*

    One of the things my father said at his brother's funeral was that the awfulness of their upbringing had precluded a real relationship between them in their adult life.

    I'm sure things are far more complex than that, having to do with character,and responsiblity loads and resentments and and and, but there has to be truth in it too - abuse takes away and awful lot more than we see.

    Self protection and giving away guilt are so important, though - why hop on the carousel again and again. I'm glad to see you feeling strong and free, I hope it stays around! xx

  13. Isn't it odd how two siblings raised in the same home can have such different memories? Or is it the memories are the same, but one just chooses not to remember it accurately? Either way, you have been set free. Whether it was from your brother's insistence that you change your memories or from your giving a damn being broken (or a combination of both), you know your past and choose to rise above it and be the AWESOME human you are. If my give-a-damn wasn't broken, too, I could almost feel sorry for your brother's loss of your wit and wisdom. To quote my eloquent hubby when someone has ever tried to tell him what to do....'go piss up a rope!' Love and light heading your way today.

  14. I have younger siblings who simply do not believe the horrors that us older kids had to live through with an alcoholic father. He was not that way when the 4 younger ones were coming up, he had gotten sober by then. But he was seriously nutso awful with us 3 older kids and we bear the damn scars. If I didn't let their hurtful disbelief go, it would drive me crazy. It is horrible to have the truth - your reality - denied by family. Sometimes we just have to accept the walls that keep us apart. I think you are quite right in saying that you are "grateful to your brother for bringing this realization, finally and at last." Great way to look at it.

  15. What Jo said "the awfulness of their upbringing had precluded a real relationship between them in their adult life" was my experience. Because of the unspoken policy of don't ask and don't tell, our relationships with each other was superficial. By the time I reached 40 both parents had died and I realized life was too short to settle for conditional acceptance. I needed to heal and hoped that if we had an open dialogue it would help all of us. But they become even more emotionally distant and wary. I knew they saw me as the unstable wild card. You're supposed to keep that shit buried even if that means the wounds continue to fester. At first I thought they would come around. But after 20 years I have given up hoping. Actually, I don't give a fuck anymore.

    I'm sorry for what happened between you and your brother.

  16. Families carry so much crazy in them. My dad told my brother not to tell me he was dying until after he was buried...and he didn't! Fuck them though...After a lifetime of behavior in that vein it didn't even hurt. One thing I read that resonates with me is that angry is a way people can feel safe being sad and strong at the same time. I think that might just be true. What a thing it is to try and try to reconcile with family! I am so glad you kicked him out! Rock on Miz Mer Mer Moon! Cheerings from Vermont...

  17. Family can be so hard for so many reasons. Wishing you peace and love. Gail

  18. I am so very proud of you and so happy you feel peace about this.

    Here's hoping that your brother finds his peace as well and can let go of denying your truths.

  19. A- It surely was for at least one night and today, I still feel as if I did the right thing. For me, at least.

    Joanne- I have never yet heard of a very dysfunctional family producing children who are all extremely close. It's yet another of the burdens of growing up in a house based on lies and deceit. We are trained early. We can never forget. Our coping mechanisms clash in terrible ways.
    But good friends- they can make up for a lot. I am so glad you have them.
    I love you too.

    Angella- I did what I felt I truly had to do and it was so hard. "Protect, protect, protect." That was the lesson I was taught. But Jeez! Like I said- we're both grownups and to protect myself, I finally realized I had to let go of protecting him.
    So much love back to you. So much.

    Lisa- Too many of us know what this is all about. But we find each other. We hold our hands together and it helps, doesn't it? It surely does me. Thank you.

    liv- I did the best I could. So thank you!

    Desiree- And for those of us whose boundaries were a bit, uh, shall we say "loose"? it can take a long damn time.

    gradydoctor- Those words meant the world to me. Thank you SO much. So much.

    Mrs. A- Amen, sister. Amen.

    Jo- That was a beautiful comment and it really did open my eyes to the truth of the terrible tainting of the sibling relationship which comes from such families. At the very least, the simple presence of the sibling can be a trigger. This is so incredibly sad. Thank you.
    Hugs to you too. Always.

    Catrina- As I said above, sometimes coping mechanisms just clash horribly which precludes any real communication or trust. It is a horrible thing. AND IT'S NOT FAIR! We should be able to love our siblings like no one else.

    Colette- My brother will flatly deny things I tell him, even things that involved him. And it's when I say these things that he gets the most furious at me. I think that anything I do which threatens to pull down the walls that he's built around himself is not tolerable to him. I understand that. But I do not need to be involved in it.

    Aspen- I completely understand and agree. Again, I have to say that I am so sorry that any of us has to know what this is all about. Insight does help, and eventual letting go.

    BigMamabird- The substitution of anger for fear or sorrow is something I learned about a long time ago. It is definitely true. Yep. But once I realized what I was doing, my anger did lessen its hold on me. I had to learn to feel vulnerable.

    Gail- Thank you so much, sweetie.

    NOLA- I doubt he ever will. And that's okay. But I don't have to participate.

  20. You are absolutely right. It is no longer your battle. I'm so proud of you!

  21. Well, I'm late to this chorus but joining in with my big, alto, booming, sometimes angry but always fierce voice. You know how I feel. I'm glad you were out of fucks to deal with such nonsense and that you did so (with, I'm certain, lots of pain) with truth and grace. I have to say that I find it almost hilarious that your brother believes you to be incapable of real interaction -- I'll go out on a limb right here and say that I've ACTUALLY TALKED WITH YOU IN REAL TIME -- and you're as real and skilled and filled with love and connection as anyone else I've ever shared the good and the bad of life with --

    I love you, Ms. Moon.

  22. NOLA- There is great sadness but there is peace.

    Elizabeth- I love you, Elizabeth. So much.

  23. I'm sorry it came to this, but you seem to be in a good, real place about it all. Sometimes the ways two people see the world are just too different to mesh. I wish your brother could acknowledge what you've been through a little better, and try to understand how you might be feeling, but as Nanci Griffith sings, "If wishes were changes, we'd all live in roses."


Tell me, sweeties. Tell me what you think.