Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Cleaning the Den Part I

My thoughts turned to Big Sister as I sat on the dirty yellow carpet, surrounded by relics of our family. What did she think about our family, about our parents? What was her reaction to the questions and revelations that this house clean was evoking? We were only two years apart in age, yet our family experiences were miles apart, as were our reactions to our father’s illness. Our relationship had already been strained by my father‘s situation, a common occurrence in families touched by illness; I imagined our reactions and recollections of events and actions taken were miles apart as well. Inevitably, where there were siblings, there were expectations and emotions; disappointments and disillusionment. We had tried to communicate throughout, with varied success. I couldn’t help but wonder what our relationship would look like at the end of this experience.

Enough floor space had finally been cleared so we could reach the closet, which was full of more stuff: boxes, bags, carpet remnants, rolls of fiberglass. Even a filing cabinet shoe-horned into the corner. Pulling out the empty cabinet and putting it in the hall, we gathered in front of the closet, trying to get a good look at the boxes and bags remaining. Digging through a huge black garbage bag, I found a surprise.

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