So I was walking along in the cemetery today after visiting my grandma again. As I’m walking away after our visit, I walk right up to my great uncle Pete’s and great aunt Eleanor’s graves. I thought that their graves were in a different place of the cemetery and have different headstones so it was a pleasant surprise to find them.
As I stood there I remembered them as being so loving and so giving. They were devoutly religious people. That was one of the reasons that kept me from visiting them when I was a kid. Since my grandpa, Pete’s brother, was the black sheep on the family, because he was a raging, mean, alcoholic, my Dad didn’t visit with them much when he was a kid. I didn’t go see them at all when I was a kid except for a couple of times when there was some social function, like a wedding or a funeral. What I remembered was that every time they would see me, they would act like I was one of their own kids. I say all of this because I am starting to see how my families dis-ease was cultural as much as it was hereditary.
How come my grandpa’s kids, all my aunts and uncles were depressed or alcoholics or they isolated themselves from the rest of my family, and my great Uncle Pete and Aunt Eleanor were loving open and kind and inviting? It is not like they didn’t have their issues, because I am sure they did.
I cant attribute it solely to their religious views, because I had other family members who were religious but still isolated. So what I think a lot of was how everyone dealt with their issues. Their struggles. I remember they all pitched together and built their first church together. My family has lived in a remote area for 6 generations and they had to build a church as it was too far to go to the nearest church which was probably 20-25 miles away. You say, that is not a big deal and I agree with you. But remember this was over 100 years ago that they settled in the area. There were no cars then.
But back to my family. The sins of the father do get handed down to the son if the father is not aware of or denies the sins. My grandfather could not see that he was a mean, raging alcoholic. Neither could my Dad until he was about 60. I was lucky and got to learn at 30. But I am just now dealing with the sins I carried and I have been sober over 26 years.
I guess the point I am trying to get across is that if I cant see my shadow, my dark side, then I am probably projecting it onto others, including my children.
123 RV, SA!