Friday, January 30, 2009

When it comes to family, at least there's one person you get to choose

So due to the snow and ice we got this week, I was able to blast through the remaining Twilight books.  My sister was trapped here for awhile, since she spends the night with us when bad weather is forecasted.  We live half an hour, one mountain range and 1000 vertical feet closer to her work than my parents do (plus our driveway is a reasonable 20 ft. long and not a terror-inducing quarter mile long icy plunge that skirts along clifftops and weaves through boulders and trees) so we usually are not quite as trapped as they are when it snows, but sometimes it hits us hard too.  Anyway, since she was trapped here, so was the 3rd book so we traded back and forth (sometimes with more goodwill than other times) and I got through the last two books in time for her to take them along on her trip to Florida today.  Now I'm really missing Edward and Bella, of course.  I love to read book series...the author can devote much more time to character development and I feel like you really get to know and love the characters, but it makes it that much harder when the story's over.  Oh well.  I thought I'd never survive after I finished the 7th Harry Potter book and yet I've found other books to obsess over, so I'm sure there's something else out there for me.

So yesterday since I had nothing to read, Emily and I spent the day visiting.  We visited Daddy at work (which we don't do NEARLY enough, considering he works 5 minutes away), we visited my mom to say goodbye before she goes to Florida with my sister for the week, and unfortunately we visited my drug-addict Aunt who was up from Atlanta to spend some time with her granddaughters.  Her story is far too long and horrific to relay here, suffice to say she was a teenager in the 60's and has spent most of her time since then staggering drunk and high on painkillers.  Her brain is absolutely fried, which makes talking to her similar to talking to a  drunk toddler, only she's even more self-centered.  She had never met Emily and was begging to do so, so I figured I might as well go quickly introduce them while she was in the area and seemed to be doing well enough that she wouldn't try to steal anything from me while I was there.  Isn't it crazy what you'll put yourself through for family?

So we drove over, and Emily played with her twin second cousins while I sat and listened to my Aunt's stories, mostly about how horrible all her health problems are (but how she's also holding up better than any patient any of her doctors have ever seen) and how every toy that either of the twins showed any preference for was of course bought by her.  Then she decided to give me the Elizabeth ring, a ring that has been passed down through the generations in my family from oldest daughter to oldest daughter, along with the middle name Elizabeth.  Aunt Diane didn't have any daughters (although she did unfortunately have a son who's even more of a mess than she is), so the ring and the name go to her sister's oldest daughter, me.  I was pleased to get the ring, both because of the history attached to it and because I worried that the longer Aunt Diane kept it, the more likely she would be to pawn it or lose it.  She told me that the tradition was to pass down the ring and to tell the story of it when the ring went to the next generation...too bad she was the one who gave it to me because all I got from her were incoherent half-sentences with very few names.  I knew the story of the ring already, but I still don't know who it was made for originally or how old it is.  She assured me it's made of gold, although just looking at it you can see that it's actually copper or something similarly colored.  I guess I'll have to take it in to a jeweler to find out any details about it.

Then she sat way too close to me, and stared at me for way too long with eyes brimming and lower lip trembling.  Right when I was about to decide I couldn't take it anymore, she whispered "I love you" in a gooey, tremulous voice and slowly leaned over to cup my face in her hands and plant a lengthy, disgustingly wet kiss on my cheek.  It was only by using up every shred of self control I had left that I was able to hold back the vomit.   I don't mind emotion, but when people are overly-emotional just to add drama it drives me insane.

So at least that unpleasantness is over with, and hopefully we can avoid her having contact with Emily for at least another 2 years.  I'm torn between keeping Emily away from her once she's old enough to remember anything that might be said and using her as a cautionary tale to show Emily what happens when you abuse drugs. 

But on a much more positive note, today is the 11 year anniversary of Will's and my first date.  11 years ago today he picked me up at Middletown High after my all-county chorus practice, we drove in his '79 Volvo station wagon to dinner at Ruby Tuesday, then went to the nice new movie theater to see Phantoms.  Today the car is long dead, Will would rather die than eat at Ruby Tuesday, and the movie theater is creepy and ghetto.  But he still gives me butterflies, and I still feel lucky and amazed that he seems to enjoy being around me too.

I'm so glad all that practice doodling "Sara Randall" in my notebook in 7th grade Algebra didn't go to waste :-)

I love you bunches, my inseparable partner for the last 11 years and most loyal blog reader!

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