Another picture text came my way from my Mom and it was bitter sweet. I know it is my family's way of including me, especially living further away and not getting to be part of family gatherings. And I hate to admit it and it is one reason why it has taken me so long to write about it. It stings and hurts on multiple levels. I wish it wasn't so. I really do. I think I was trying not to let it bother me. But the harder I try, the more it creeps back and hurts more.
One of my godsons celebrated his birthday in November. It is also the same month of my Dad's birthday. Little J~ is a guy's guy and loves being around his male relatives. My mom gets a kick out of how much he enjoys my dad and buddies up with him. In the picture, Little J~ was sitting on my Dad's lap playing an arcade game at Chuck E. Cheese. My first thought was, how sweet. Which, I guess is an improvement. But, it was quickly followed by a piercing sadness.
Then my dad sent a picture text of Big J~ and Little J~ where they both had enormous grins. It is a rare sight with my cousin because he is such a serious guy and his little boy doesn't fall far from the tree on that one. That picture made me smile. It wasn't as hard. And I was happy for them, more wholly in that moment.
I continue to get better at seeing people in pictures with their children. But it was hard to see one with Little J~ with my dad. I want so much for that little boy to be my son sitting on my dad's lap. I want to be the one to bring my parents joy with grandchildren. Durring times like these, I briefly ask myself, why can't that be me?
It also doesn't seem to be getting any easier because as my parents get older, it is just another reminder that time is limited. My mom recently shared that my dad is thinking about retiring next year. I don't want him to retire. It just really means he is getting older and I don't want to accept that. It just doesn't seem fair. But life is not fair as it keeps painfully reminding me.
All of this probably sounds selfish, but I cannot entirely help it. I try to rise above. But sometimes you have to admit those ugly feelings to yourself. Otherwise, they just eat you up and that is not good. I guess it goes back to the idea that feelings are not bad, it is what you do with them. So, I keep it to myself. And I remind myself to be thankful that my parents get to have these kinds of experiences. And it is good for my cousin and my godson because Big J~'s parents each passed away awhile ago and never met there grandchildren. It is a blessing for all to be there for each other to give support and share their love in other ways that cannot be.