John & I took my oldest brother out to lunch – he wanted to hear all the juiciest bits from the IAGG Conference. Reaffirmed for both of us the benefit WE get from making regular time for Peter in our lives.
It’s a good thing such contact is important on more than a “pleasant times” basis, because the outing was more strained than expected.
Peter seemed less interested in catching up with us than he did in picking up some typing that had been done for him. He’d had a large breakfast & still wasn’t hungry at 12:30 for lunch, which he took home with him for supper. The car seats were too low, the table at the diner too high. He made nasty cracks about someone who matters a lot to me & seemed stuck in once-but-no-longer characteristically mean spirits.
And I am happy to report that NONE of it fazed me! ☮️
One of the JOYS of creeping up there in years is having the blessed long view. Instead of jumping to the defense of the person he thoughtlessly maligned, I just told a story that gave my bro more information, context; no idea if it changed his opinion, but at least it deepened his knowledge. When he slammed the very candidate HE voted for, I defended POTUS by noting he’s no different now than on 11/08/16 – shared in an unsnarky way. Not once did I take exception to what he said – just commented, honestly, “Interesting…” ~or~ “I never considered that possibility.”
The fact is, we haven’t a clue what might be eating at my oldest bro. Age & experience shows that what we know is about .000000000000000001% compared to what we don’t, so any hypothesis I come up with for PRL’s gnarly mood is guaranteed to be off-kilter or flagrantly wrong.
My sister, Mim, had gotten tight with Peter over her last 30 years. Her 07/03/15 death left him without an irreplaceable phone pal – per PRL, they talked almost daily. At 65, I find myself ready willing & able to leave ancient perceived slights & unresolved family mish-mashes in the dark dim past. How ridiculous if, after a lifetime craving stronger family ties, I dissed this opportunity to be a sis!
How wondrous that John & I had the pleasure of listening to LAURA CARSTENSEN on the drive home, talking on The Ted Radio Hour about how we experience time. It seems that as grow seriously upward, we SAVOR our time more than when we were youngsters of 40 or 50.
Today, Peter was apparently feeling very mortal – not in a good way. At 65, I can APPRECIATE & savor that this afternoon presented an opportunity to lend a hand & be present for someone who, inspite of having a bitterly checkered past with his baby sis, needed me. He challenged my patience, stretched the limits of my good nature, dredged up feelings I’d rather not feel – and reaffirmed that all those things are part of being a sibling, are all part of something wonderful… if I have the wisdom to let it just be whatever it is.
added the next morning, 5:28 a.m. ~ ~ Woke up pondering how powerful my experience of yesterday’s outing would be if I could know Peter’s experience of the morning, before we arrived, of our time together, about HIS feelings as & after we dropped him off back at his residence. My guess is it would be more different than similar, yet I feel as if what I sensed was bedrock reality. Ha! Not that simple.