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Saturday, January 30, 2010

Family is More Than

I received bad news last night- someone in my family has died, possibly, or probably, he took his own life.

He was related to me by marriage, but that marriage ended and both moved on. While I haven't seen him in some time, he was around for a good chunk of my life. It is so hard to understand how I'm feeling. I think it boils down to the idea of family and the definitions we place on it. Technically, he wasn't related to me any more, but does that make him less a part of the family? It certainly doesn't make our grief any less, or easier to wrap our minds around.

He was a genuinely nice guy but as my mom put it, "f*cked up". But as I said to her, "aren't we all a little bit?" I get that about him and a lot of people I know and care about. This is just one more event is a series of difficult things that are currently going on or have occurred in the family recently. Things I can't talk about here except to say that we're all just trying to help each other through step by step.

I've been mulling over whether I would say anything here or not about what happened. The fact is that when my mom told me yesterday afternoon, I didn't feel anything. There were words I was hearing, but they didn't have substance to them. My Mom was understandably upset and I was trying to help her but I couldn't feel anything at the moment. I felt a little useless. Then Bean woke up screaming and I was trying to deal with her, making me distracted. I know my mom understands.

It wasn't till I looked up the news article on the internet about the incident that I broke. Seeing his picture, broke open the dam that was holding all the emotions in. A monumental flood. When it passed, I didn't necessarily feel better but in a way I did, if you know what I mean. Though, even typing this last paragraph brought another wave on. A momentary release.

It's a reminder that the ties of "family" go beyond blood and genetics. There's the saying that you can choose your friends but not your family. I disagree. You can choose your family; and right now, we're grieving for someone we cared about and who meant something to us. It's the realization that family goes beyond life, and death.


areyoukiddingme said...

I'm sorry for your loss. Emotional ties are not generally broken by legal decisions. I wish you and your family peace.

"alone again, naturally" said...

I couldn't have said it better. Hugs!!

Kristin said...

I am so sorry for your loss. {{{Hugs}}}

Melis.sa said...

i Couldn't agree more with your post. I'm so unbelievably sorry for your loss.

WiseGuy said...

Am so sorry....feeling somebody's loss has got nothing to do with blood ties. I know that well.

I wish that he could have been saved somehow. I am sorry.

Andrea said...

I'm sorry for your loss. My thoughts are with you and your family.

Quiet Dreams said...

I'm sorry for your loss.

Jen said...

sorry for your loss

JamieD said...

I have always felt that criteria for family should necessarily be only a blood or marriage relation.

I am so sorry for your loss.

Another Dreamer said...

I am so sorry for your loss (*hugs*)

I agree with you wholeheartedly.