For the first time in well over a year – a visit with all my in-laws. The Husband’s sister, her husband and their child (Sophie and Nels’ only bonafide cousin!) and of course, his parents. Two cats, four kittens, a turtle, a hamster, and two fish tanks – in a small modest apartment in the Elma Arms. This was the first time I’ve met my brother-in-law, after about four years of marriage to Ralph’s sister. He seems like a good guy. It was a brief visit. My husband’s family stirs him up in mysterious ways. He is drained at the end of the day. They are wonderfully kind people and it is good to meet with them – we should do it more often. But the fact remains, it troubles him.
While visiting I saw a picture in the hallway of my husband and his brother Russ, mere months before Russ died at 16 years old. Ralph gleams at the camera in impish self-confidence. His 10-year old self is fuller and bursting with life compared to the near-skeletal boy sitting next to him, cautiously smiling at the camera. The picture fills me with a profound sadness. I don’t know how that 10-year-old boy became my husband.
At my parents’ home I revert to childish behavior. I am a slob about housework. I don’t do my share in anything. I want to sit around, BS, drink coffee, and watch movies. My parents, oddly, don’t comment on the glaring discrepancy of how hard they know I work at home and how tidy of a cook and housekeeper I am in “my” life, and how much of a leech I am in theirs.
Away from friends, I ruminate on their lives. So much going on – marital problems, struggles, selfishness, sadness. I am grateful that the Husband and I are on a truce in the now.
Enough thoughts for the night. Time for sitting up late with my brother – another immature behavior that I look forward to with relish.