I received a small miracle in the mail today.
But let me backtrack.
I think I’ve mentioned here before how in the recent past I’ve had to cut myself off from my dad’s family, and how much heartache it gives me. This included un-friending them on FB as it was just too hurtful to see online how excited they were to see each other in person, providing me a glaring reminder that I am not “one of them”. If you somehow missed that little nugget of Sallygirl trivia, now you know.
Anyway, a few weeks ago my cousin put up some photos of my dad and his brothers (cousin’s dad obviously being one of them) and I think my grandparents too and then tagged all the cousins so we could see them. It was a kind thing for him to do, but unfortunately it was also a stinging reminder of how certain family members (not this cousin) hold all the evidence that this family ever existed and they are not willing to share. I simply commented “I wish there were more family photos to go around” hoping that the offending member would see and went on with my life.
Last week my cousin asked for my address. This presented me with some anxiety as I have not planned to send Christmas cards to this family. Would I now need to send one to him, as I assumed that was the reason he wanted my address? I do not want to continue to insert myself into the lives of people that don’t want me there and though the receipt of a card from me may not register on their radar, to me it means something.
Today when B got the mail, nestled in with the junk mail was a stiff cardboard envelope from my cousin. DO NOT BEND. This was not a Christmas card. It was four black and white original photos of my dad as a small boy.
I know this doesn’t “mean” anything. I’m not going to read into this experience some kind of sign that they love me and want me to be part of their lives. There’s not going to be a big family reunion where we all laugh and cry and pledge to see each other more often. But here in my little corner of California I’m shedding a few tears of gratitude, touched that a prayer was answered when for whatever reason, my cousin reached out to me and sent these pictures.