Friday, 28 January 2011

Family Affairs

Families, can't live with them,cant live without them.

I have 3 big brothers and being the youngest & only girl I've seen my fair share of squabbles throughout my life. My Brothers became even more important to me when we lost our parents.

Last week my cousin dropped down dead with a massive heart attack, he was only 46.Jimmy was a great character, someone who was life & soul of party and once you'd met him you'd never forget him. He was an entertainer and had his own Karaoke business purely because he loved singing. His claim to fame was beating Susan Boyle in a karaoke contests once! He did many charity gigs close to his heart over the years, hr really did have a big heart. He leaves behind a wife & a 6 yr old son. What words do you have for them? There's a great big whole i their lives now.

So the funeral was yesterday. It's sad but true that funerals are the only time i get my 3 big brothers in any one place together these days. Mainly because David & Alan don't speak to each other. I've tried to smooth things over and almost succeeded a few times but it always seems to break down at last mo. So now i leave them be, if one makes a comment i tell them i don't want to hear it.

Things seemed to go OK and they even managed to sit round table together at one point without any daggers getting drawn. progress perhaps.

We're not only ones to have these issues though, not by any means. My cousin Linda (Jimmy's sister) hasn't spoken to her sister for about 3 yrs, and not spoken to her Mother for about 2 yrs.

I'm very close to Linda & her husband and see them socially a lot, i've had many a conversation to Linda trying to get her to make up with her mother to no avail. She is just too stubborn. I've pointed out how bad she'll feel if something happens to her without them making up, how guilty she might feel. But no, she's not for moving. It really upsets me as i don't like to see my Auntie upset. Yesterday when we arrived at my Auntie's house you could cut atmosphere with a knife.

I spoke to Linda in the car and tried to reason with her that she needed to give her Mum a bit of leeway, she'd lost her son after all. Yes Linda had lost her Brother but no parent expects to lose a child, i cant begin to imagine the pain that causes. She seemed to listen to me and did make bit of effort when we arrived. I cant understand a lot of Linda's problems, she feels pushed out & less important because she doesn't have kids and her other 2 sisters do. Her Mum does seem to do more for them than Linda but then i can see why too. It's a minefield.

I tried to get round everyone yesterday and made sure i wasn't in any *camp* (like I'd ever camp ;)) and i know it sounds crazy but i like funerals for simple reason it brings everyone back together whether they like it or not. We see people we haven't seen for year and swap stories and laugh, and cry. I saw my Auntie Dolly for first time in about 15 yrs. she is 86 next month and as sharp as a tack, she told me a few stories about my mum and it made me smile, and made me sad at same time. Made me sad that Linda & Jeanette cant make up. I don't have that luxury.

I was already thinking about my Mum a lot this week anyway. She was a great Burns fan and i read at the weekend that the first Burns Suppers were originally held on Jan29th til they realised they'd got the date wrong. That's my Mum's birthday, i do wonder if she ever knew that, i suspect not as I'm sure I'd have heard it many a time over the years!

Had constant reminders of Mum yesterday, people telling me stories and telling me how much she was missed by everyone. When i found out one of my cousins would be 52 this yr it shocked me. My Mum died just 5 weeks after her 52nd Birthday. This year is be 21 long years since she died, i was just 2 weeks past my 21st Birthday.

Sorry if this is a bit of morbid blog, i just need to get these things down sometimes. Jimmy's funeral was indeed a celebration of his life. His coffin was piped into church to Caledonia, nice touch. And his parting song? You'll love this. Bat out of hell, Sang by Jimmy, blaring out as we exited the church, i laughed & cried at same time. Clearly the Minister had a sense of Humour, they'd had a service down in Stranraer last sat and the Minister refused point blank to play it!

I guess my point is, Dont let petty arguments get out of hand and make that special effort to see the people you keep meaning to but never quite get round to it. They might not be around for ever and you might not get the chance again.

Cherish the ones you love.


  1. Good post Sandra. It is good to share these things.

    Hope your family can get things sorted out between them.

  2. Sorry to hear about your cousin. Especially him being so young.

    Glad to hear your family are as mental as mine.

    Debs xx

  3. Ack, sad about your cousin and the family crap but even when writing about all that you still manage to make me smile. Big hugs x

  4. Posts like these are hard to read because they remind me of people I have lost and miss dreadfully. Life's far too short to let disagreements turn into big rifts. But these things are also hard to write about, Sandra thank you for sharing this lovely post.

  5. OMFG I can comment. at last. yahoo.



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