Pt. 1 – Sunday, 5/15/2016
Today is a giant reunion day. A flash forward of sorts for a member of the family that left our circle when she and I were both still young. I was six, she was thirteen.
Going to meet up in Tulsa, Oklahoma sort of equidistant for each of us. Our little entourage of my daughter, grandson, mother and myself. My older sister having arranged for her, her children, grandchildren and other family’s siblings – all 22 of them – to meet us at a local park there.
After so much time, all you can do is show up as who you are, who you’ve become over time. My sister and I have talked on occasion over the years. It’s like we’ve never been apart when we get on the phone. But, other than one previous visit with her and her family, I know nothing of how their family has grown, who is whose child or grandchild or nephew, cousin, etc. And to be sure, we will need a scorecard if not this afternoon, then coming away so we can help my 95-year old mother keep tabs on who she’s met and now can include in a larger family circle.
Oklahoma, where the original family split took place. Just a little further east from where it happened. Coming home in a very distant, hazy kind of way. History revisited without the emo and the shattering. Bringing it all back together for some peace and healing, inclusion and moving forward.
The past stays the same but the now is on the way to becoming what will be. Fingers crossed for some happy memories to take home today.
Pt. 2 – Tue., 5/17/2016
Many smiles, hugs and memories later – old and new – our family parted ways at a KFC in Tulsa near the park where we reconnected with one another. This leaves one disgruntled, ailing younger sister up in Oregon to still bring into the fold. Not enough time to get her from there to Tulsa since she won’t fly and we couldn’t give her enough notice to arrange for her cat’s care. It also leaves my adult grandson wishing he had gone after all.
Seeing Mother happy and surrounded by my older sister and her adult children, grandchildren and a few up and coming great-grandchildren was so amazing! I think she stayed happy the whole afternoon and evening. She even thanked Heather when we arrived home.
Clearly, it was a monumental social coup for everyone, and a chance to make plans to meet again soon. Already, several family members are planning to stop by on their way to other parts of Texas and Oklahoma in the next few weeks and months.
And so begins a new chapter in our family’s history. Decades of distance and detachment dissolved and resolved in an afternoon.
Once again, Mother rules.