This post is going to be somewhat long, only because it’s more personal to me. Much conflict has been going on within my family and I’ve somewhat become the centerpiece of it all. Whatever issues arise around me I try (to the best of my ability) to keep myself out of them and remain impartial; by doing this, I’ve essentially become the listening ear. It has its benefits and drawbacks. Positively, I get to hear each side of the story; however, hearing each side allows me to know how ridiculous this entire feud is.
I was venting to my grandmother earlier last week and made a halfhearted comment “Someone is seriously going to have to die before everyone realizes just how dumb all of this is”.
A few days later, I stumbled across one of my old blogging sites from 2011-2012 and I was thrilled (and embarrassed) to read some of the old entries. Reading my old forgotten work is like looking at my past through an unfiltered lens. I actually stumbled across this heartfelt gem from April 20, 2012.
April 15 was the one year anniversary of my uncles death. He had cancer. I basically bawled my eyes out the entire day and the night before. I don’t even know why I feel so guilty. Wait, yes I do. I hardly spent any time with him. While he was alive, I spent time avoiding him and ignoring him. I never imagined he would be gone so fast, I really didn’t get a chance to say goodbye. I sort of feel better though. When I went over my godmothers house, she told me that what helped her rest peacefully with her brothers passing was apologizing for all that she did. Well I tried that.
I was sitting in the living room, the commercials were on the television. I turned them down, being the only one alone in the house, and cried my eyes out. I went to the corner of the room and pulled out the urn with my uncles ashes, and just sat and talked to it. I told him how sorry I was and how much I missed him. It actually came from the heart, and after I finished, it felt like weight was just lifted off of my shoulders. Now, I hardly cry when I think about the situation.
This post may seem very far-fetched, because death is often not something that we consider. However, we forget that the young no longer necessarily outlive the old. Car accidents, sickness, being in the wrong place at the wrong time (very easy in Cleveland), kidnappings, drownings, unfortunate accidents. Absolutely anything can happen to any of us.
I often find myself feeling displaced and not being valued in many of the communities that I enter. My family is the only place where I truly feel loved, valued and integral. Even through our dysfunction, I am absolutely blessed to be a Malone.
I guarantee you that if something happens to any of us, the last thought on your mind will be what the other person did wrong. You will look back on how you handled the situation and resent yourself for not reacting differently. That person may be in their grave, but your hurt will most definitely be alive and well.
Today is the six year anniversary of my Uncle Steve’s sunset and I miss him more than words can describe. However, i’m grateful that his passing was able to teach me the value of life, understanding and forgiveness. Passing from bone marrow cancer, my Uncle was unable to eat solidified foods and eventually no foods at all. He always talked about wanting to eat a huge burger with extra bacon. Luckily, my aunt, grandmother and I were able to do just that today.
I love you so much Uncle Steve, and I wish that I could’ve told you that while you were here. I hope that I can make you proud one day, and that you too are enjoying your bacon burger today. Rest in Peace