Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Her name was YS. My parents rented her a room while she was teaching at a local high school. She lived with us for several years and was like an older sister to me. Soon, she fell in love. She had a lover's spat when he had his eyes on another more attractive teacher. But they got married and moved to a nearby town. It was right around that time, my parents were kicked out of the synagogue. We moved to the same town and I went to the same high school that she was teaching. She ignored me completely the entire time I was there. As if, I never existed. I despised her from then onwards and my feelings towards her have not changed to this day.

That name resurfaced years later. My mother had nothing but good things to say about her. She gave my mother money. Sponsored my nephew and niece for camps. She let my oldest brother stayed at her house when he was working momentarily at the town she was living in. My mother went all out to convince me to like this person that she once had nothing good to say about her. How quickly her perception changed for a few dollars. She wanted me to visit her. She kept saying how great YS was.
I told my mother that I would never visit her. In reference to her hospitality, I told my mother that I would rather sleep in a car than sleep at her house.

I soon found out that she just started a new church and her effort was nothing but an attempt to recruit for new members. There was nothing genuine in her effort. She still never cared. She was nosey and inquired about the money that I sent to my parents. She tried to convince a few others to leave their church and join hers. It was ridiculous. Others were not swayed. Not like my mother.

My mother lived her life like a little kid in the playground. All it took was a candy to buy her affection. Childish and shallow.
It just occurred to me that I don't keep a regular contact with either one of my brothers. One I have little respect of but I also know he has a soft spot for me. One, who is completely in line with me in terms of my perception of our family dynamics. I don't ever discuss with my oldest brother regarding my true sentiment and I wonder how he would react if I simply send him the link to my blog. Would it be a rude awakening? Would it make him mad? Confused? I don't know. I might just do that in time. My second brother has the link but I don't think he is reading it on a regular basis. If he is, he has made little comment or reference to it. I also realized that each time we spoke, it is always about how crazy our parents were. It has become a broken record for both of us. Other than that, we don't really have anything else in common. Even if we do, we don't really know how to relate to each other in a healthy way. It is rather bizarre. For the first time, I am beginning to question, what a healthy sibling relationship should look like?

I've heard time and time again about others who are very close to their brother or sister. I used to be very close to my oldest  brother. When I first joined the airline and living in another country, I used to call home and spoke to him hours on end. There was a tremendous amount of ease when communicating with him even when we never had anything truly in common.  My relationship with my second brother when we were little was often overshadowed by sibling jealousy. He always wanted to be the best and I always trumped his card. Always getting more attention being that I was the only girl and always doing a little better than him in school. My brothers' relationship with each other is not even an option to consider. They were on the opposing team from the get go and it had been so to this day.

These days, I thread very lightly with my oldest brother. He had publicly echoed my mother's sentiment about me on social network site. In person, he was very much the same older brother that I knew. My relationship with my second brother was more intimate when we were living in the same country. He visited at least once a year and was here when my son was born. Since he left, our contact with each other have dwindled rather significantly.

Today, we are three grown adults in three parts of the world. Doing our own thing, having our own history, and licking our own wounds. What would we do if one of us need a kidney and the other one is the perfect match? Would we be willing to sacrifice to preserve the life of another?  I think we would be very judgmental.  I am beginning to wonder how I can start to initiate a healthy relationship with my brothers. Maybe I need to make it a point to connect with my brothers on a more regular basis. Maybe I need to get in touch with them and just be a sister. By doing so, maybe we can start to create new memories away from our past.