What a strange thing I just told my husband, and my friend Jodelle about this BLOG. I know that it is posted on the World Wide Web, but I don't think anyone else had ever read it...
My dad just called and wanted to know if I had seen the Christmas Ducks.
I said, "I have never seen any Christmas Ducks".
and he said, "Yes, you have, they come out every year for you. AND I had saved them for you. AND now when we open the box, we can't find the Christmas Ducks."
"Maybe Demanda took them." I say jokingly.
"No, Jennyalice. Demanda did NOT take the Christmas ducks." Demanda is my sister, and was prone to liberating items for her personal use from me as a teenager.
"Maybe Jaster?" Who is my sister's husband, and a pastor, and not prone to stealing things.
"No. Jennyalice, no one stole the Christmas ducks from you. Do you want a Noah's ark? It is filled with animals."
"Is it made of wood?", "Are the animals inside made of wood?" I ask, keenly, oddly, interested
"Yes, they are."
"Yes, please dad. That would be lovely. Wait, where on earth are you?" Is he out shopping? I don't need anyone to BUY me anything. Finding something fine, but buying, spending hard earned cash on me... not okay.
"I'm at home. I bought all of these things for my children. For Christmas, but we don't celebrate any more."
I think how sad this statement is. It is so true, we have such a hard time gathering as a group anymore. Toys stay in their original boxes, never even looked at before being stored in the attic. Perhaps later we'll find them and sell them on eBay for double there original price. He keeps buying things for us, for my son... but things are so distant, we don't even know these treasures exist.
"Demanda will bring you a Noah's ark." You will each have one, but yours will be better."
He says this seriously. I think he believes I really was hurt that my step-sister got his grandmother's old 1940's radio, art deco wicker chair and various sundry items. I guess I was hurt enough to notice, but not by the gesture that she would have the items. Not at all.
She is my sister in ways that blood would never confirm. Sisters by choice is a lot better than sisters by chance. No, I was hurt because I did not have the ability to visit his house and see his treasures... family treasures, family history. Cut off by distance, and time and lack of money and allergies and engine trouble and all sorts of stooopid things I have managed to withdraw from my life in Southern California so completely that I no longer even get the hand-me-down bed Gloria (my mom, the one who carried me) is giving to my little brother (the one by blood, Gerard), or the beautiful wicker rocker Demanda has in her guest room.
I am not more deserving than any of the other kids, more appreciative or even by a longshot, a better kid... it's just, well, I am not even offered the items anymore. This is kind of a weird thing when you are the oldest, and used to being the one who gets to pass on the first showcase. I wonder if I should get a name tag.