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    Today we had a family get together. We haven't had one in over 10 years and I hadn't seen my parents in 8.

    We had a place to meet and we got there first.
    We decided to wait outside for my parents and when they showed up it took everything in me to not burst out crying. My dad has always been 5'10" and over 200 pounds. He used to play tennis three times a week. When my parents pulled up my father hobbled out of the car and he was all hunched over. He could hardly walk but he's 87 and just had his knee operated on. My mom who is 5 years younger has a cane now also.

    It was a moment In time that stood still.
    It was so intense that everything felt in slow motion. My parents almost walked right past me because they didn't recognize me. It's one of those moments that's freeze framed and will stay in my memory forever and a day.
    It was bittersweet.

    It was my brothers 60th birthday and his birthday wish was to see his whole family together again and it was a joyous memorable day.

    It was a rainy cloudy day but my heart was filled with joy and nothing could bring me down so I took some pictures to remember the day. These are pics along the way.

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    Last edited by Spiritwolfe; 10-16-2016, 08:12 PM.

  • #2
    Hi SW
    It was nice you had a family day,I can't remember the last family day I had with my clan,likely 43 years ago.. your pics of the road to and from are very nice, I love the pumpkin people and the fall colors. Treasure the moment always
    Bruce

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    • #3
      I had the same experience with my parents the last time I saw them....only I walked past mom did not recognize her. Family reunion......it was the last time I seen my parents as both pasted away and many of aunts and uncles...and I was not allowed to get on the airplane after that and fly home due to medical issues. The time at that family reunion was deeply planted in my memory. We never know what the future holds for us.....all we have.... is our nows.
      . Explore! Dream! Discover!” aloha Di

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      • #4
        Nothing brings out the emotions like family reunions. And it really depends on the family whether these turn out good or bad. We had a family reunion last summer and I did not even know over half the people. Most of my close relatives have passed away. Mostly good memories though.
        Terry

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        • #5
          Glad to here that you had a good reunion SW; as we grow older this gatherings are usually the result of someone's passing and not a joyful get together.
          If you're looking for me, you'll find me in a pile of wood chips somewhere...

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          • #6
            Glad you had a memorable day. Maybe you don't want to wait so long for the next one?

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            • #7
              What a great day it must have been. That content feeling that settles over a person at those times is unbelievable.
              . . .JoeB

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              • #8
                There's nothing quite like the awareness of mortality to startle the senses. Of course death does it to us but so does time passed. I suppose it's true that most family reunions are due to a death in the family but that hasn't been the same for ours. The only people in our family are my parents and brother. There were no aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents. The only family service we have ever had was back in 1979 when my brother passed. Every other family get together is either Easter or thanksgiving .

                Why wait so so long between get togethers? The rest of them didn't. We weren't invited but I'd rather not get into that. We are planning on meeting this Christmas. I'm not sure where or how but we will.

                Its a bit of a haunting feeling to me. I'm not that close to my brother. I wish I was but for some reason we aren't so when my parents go there is only the two of us left. He has kids. We don't.

                The day was most enjoyable but the truth of the matter is that reality was practically biting at my heels that day. I can't possibly explain what I mean. There was a shift that took place. Maybe I am scared. I'm not sure and still can't shake off this feeling. It's like getting chilled to the bone.
                Mortality sure puts pettiness to shame.

                Last edited by Spiritwolfe; 10-17-2016, 11:24 PM.

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                • #9
                  Dad had 13 brothers and sisters all married almost all of them had 5 children....my cousins and all of them lived in Ohio and five times a year,... we have these giant family reunions. All us little kids running around with our fake guns shooting each other in the woods and get this zero of us are killers....LOL. As I grew up and got married, I would have the family reunion a few times a year at my house....everyone loved them because I had ten seated whirlpool in the house. . An my uncle Dan would barbecue about ten chickens. There is a lot of good memories.....
                  . Explore! Dream! Discover!” aloha Di

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Dileon View Post
                    Dad had 13 brothers and sisters all married almost all of them had 5 children....my cousins and all of them lived in Ohio and five times a year,... we have these giant family reunions. All us little kids running around with our fake guns shooting each other in the woods and get this zero of us are killers....LOL. As I grew up and got married, I would have the family reunion a few times a year at my house....everyone loved them because I had ten seated whirlpool in the house. . An my uncle Dan would barbecue about ten chickens. There is a lot of good memories.....
                    Maybe this is why there's a haunting emptiness. This is what I feel is missing. You know, the 'whole family ' part.

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                    • #11
                      Glad you are getting together again soon...it's never too late to change things.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Michelle View Post
                        Glad you are getting together again soon...it's never too late to change things.
                        And it's perfectly ok if they don't change. I'm ok with being the lone wolf.
                        Early in life, I learned a critical truth: our families can either make or break us. They can inspire, support, and uplift us. Indeed, our families can be
                        Last edited by Spiritwolfe; 10-18-2016, 05:17 PM.

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                        • #13
                          The whole family part.........you mean the gossip, the back stabbing, the idiots who go around drunk and screaming,.... and the occasional fights......that is part of it,... also. I do not get along with my oldest brother either....there are some great horror stories to tell about that one also. But as I get older ... I behave myself and keep my mouth shut, at least most of the time. Mom and I never saw eye to eye about anything...and her and dad where always fighting. LOL but I needed to let it go....they are what they are. Honestly family comes with whole package.....the good and bad and at times the really bad..... I have yet to meet the fairy tale family of one happy group of people. Some people are blessed that they do not have to deal with it..... I got bad memories also.
                          . Explore! Dream! Discover!” aloha Di

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Dileon View Post
                            The whole family part.........you mean the gossip, the back stabbing, the idiots who go around drunk and screaming,.... and the occasional fights......that is part of it,... also. I do not get along with my oldest brother either....there are some great horror stories to tell about that one also. But as I get older ... I behave myself and keep my mouth shut, at least most of the time. Mom and I never saw eye to eye about anything...and her and dad where always fighting. LOL but I needed to let it go....they are what they are. Honestly family comes with whole package.....the good and bad and at times the really bad..... I have yet to meet the fairy tale family of one happy group of people. Some people are blessed that they do not have to deal with it..... I got bad memories also.
                            Dileon. Another kissable moment. The amount of times I came back to this thread and wanted so badly to write about the 'other' part of relationships like you just did , was plenty. The reason I didn't was that I didn't quite know how to word it so It didn't come across as victim mentality or over dramatizing but what you just brought up IS the FULL reality without the pretence of family life. I spent my entire life in pretence but we're British and that's just how they rolled back then. My parents were very strict, tough upper lip Brits where children were seen and not heard. Showing endearments of affection just wasn't done but showing intense disapproval was.
                            I rebelled and became the black sheep / lone wolf and that became my role.
                            I've spent most of my life resenting this role and have had many things I've wanted to say to my parents but in that first 2 minutes when my mom went on with the blame and accusations I just smiled and hugged her. It deflated her anger. Later on halfway through dinner she started up again and I smiled at her and touched her hand while asking about her new peridot ring.
                            The art of listening is golden. It was the first time in my life that I was perfectly ok with being the family scapegoat and that it will never change. It's much easier to accept that fact then to try and change their mind. The peace I felt was soothing. It felt right. I'm finally starting to realize that how my parents feel about me isn't a reflection of who I am but rather a reflection of who they are and I'm ok with that.
                            It's a feeling I'm not accustomed to but one I have decided to adopt.
                            Long ago I decided to have no relationship than a toxic one but I know it would have been a choice I would have regret if my parents passed.
                            I get along with my brother great. We just rarely see or talk to each other so we never fight but we didn't as kids either. I am a bit jealous of the ease that he has in our family dynamics. My brother just has to show up twice a year , eat and leave BUT that's how the dice rolled. That's reality and I'm finally learning to let go; it's not worth the time or aggravation to not accept reality. It's only taken me 57 years to learn this but 'HEY' better LATE than NEVER!!!!
                            I'm genuinely proud of myself and it's a feeling I'm not accustomed to. This I'm going to change.



                            Thanks for contributing to this conversation about family reunions.
                            It was most enlightening.
                            You spelled it out with truth and honesty Dileon. There are no fairytale families except perhaps in Walt Disney movies. All genuine relationships come with the good and the bad.

                            Last edited by Spiritwolfe; 10-18-2016, 09:01 PM.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Spiritwolfe View Post

                              And it's perfectly ok if they don't change. I'm ok with being the lone wolf.
                              But see, with your last post....YOU are changing your perception of you. And that, my friend, is priceless.

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