Sunday, October 2, 2011

The Prodigal Son has returned!

And while I'm not saying you should slaughter the fatted calf... I would appreciate you saved the skin if you did. It would be interesting to play around with leather sometime.
Kidding! About the leather thing, not the being back thing, that's true. (Please don't kill the fattened calf.) I finally got back last night from a horrid two week trip to Connecticut. Sorry for the short announcement before I left, it totally happened at the last minute. You see, our storage unit in Connecticut had been broken into. And so we were forced to travel up north to deal with it. So that's what we did the weekend after I said goodbye to you all, leaving on Friday. Since right now my days are free, I volunteered to stay behind for an extra length of time up there. That way I could pack up more stuff, as well as sort though more things that when we put them into storage we though we couldn't live without them, but after enough time had passed we learned that we sure could. My father had to work during the week, so he couldn't stay. The plan was to leave me there, and come back for me in a couple of weeks to pick me up, along with whatever I packed. Originally we didn't set a specific come back date, so we could play it by ear, thinking that I could stay for at least two weeks, maybe more. Little did I know that the trip and the people I was dealing with would be so awful to me that I wish I never went in the first place, much less two excruciating weeks.
Since my father was leaving to go back south after the weekend was over, I was doing all of the work at the storage unit alone, but I was not on my own in Connecticut. Not by a long shot. I was staying with my Grandparents while I was up there at their house. Also I had two Aunts and several cousins there too. I love my Grandparents and always try to be respectful of them. Also since I'm staying at their house I try to be as helpful as I can to make my dropping in as noninvasive as possible. So I will do whatever is asked of my, and will volunteer to help out when I can. And it used to be not so bad. But the past few times I've been up here I have felt a little... taken advantage of?
Like I said, I don't I mind helping out whenever I could, it was just things kept getting piled onto what was asked of me, even by people who weren't my Grandparents. You may remember that I was up there to work on the storage unit. I do have a bit of a dust allergy, so I couldn't do a whole lot before I was coughing, sneezing, and better yet having a wheeze whenever I breathed. So I could only go and work on the storage unit every other day. But those days when I wasn't there working, I was still not resting my lungs, those people put me to work.
Out of those seven days that I was not at the storage unit, three of them I was co-babysitting with my cousin's baby. Was I asked? No. Was I thanked? No. And two of those days she was sick and in a foul mood. I did it because it made it easier for my Grandparents, since usually they are the ones stuck doing it. I don't know why people think I'm interested in babysitting, because really I'm not. I don't mind kids, but I would certainly never go out of my way to babysit one.
Also while I was there I (totally shooting myself in the foot) volunteered to work on taking a load of stuff to Goodwill. I had done that last time I was stuck up north for several weeks to deal with some stuff my sister left at my Grandmother's house. She had lived there for several years when on break from college. She left stuff there, and when my Grandmother asked if she wanted it she told her that she had taken everything she wanted and my Grandmother could deal with the rest... she can be so lovely sometimes that sister of mine. Anyway, I thought that was terrible, so I went and made sure all of her junk left my Grandmother's house last time, as well as getting rid of several things my Grandparents wanted to get rid of. This time I found several books of hers that I had missed. So I decided to plan another trip to donate stuff. When I mentioned this I was informed that "Hey, why don't you clean out the crawlspace? Then we can donate that stuff." Which was quite shocking to hear. Not sure why I was asked to clean up there, I literally have no stuff in there, and neither does my sister, or brother. And the best part was that not only was this place dusty, it was also short so I couldn't stand up fully in it. But I couldn't say no to my Grandmother. So I took this task under my belt and worked on it on my days "off". I didn't get a whole lot done, but there's several boxes less up there from my work and mine alone. Not only did I have to pull everything out of the crawlspace, I had to bring it downstairs and make sure that everything sorted out into keep and not keep, so I could donate it. This would be easier if I didn't have to get clearance from everyone that lived in that house since 1950 (when it was built). My Aunt "J" demanded that she had to look though everything before it left, or got thrown it out. Assuming that either I or her parents were idiots and would throw out something that she couldn't live without, even though the most recent thing I found in there was from 1981. Last Goodwill trip I had more of my (sister's) stuff and did most of the work, and this trip I had less of my own stuff, but did basically all the work.
But I did it, as well as many other chores they asked. There were days off that I was running all over that house doing chores when really I should have just gone to the storage unit and worked and dealt with the dust, I got just as much dust there as I did at the storage unit. I don't know why these people think for some reason I enjoy doing these mundane tasks. Somehow they think I enjoy being their Cinderella for the few weeks that I'm there. After a while, it really started to wear on me, I wouldn't have minded the piling up work so much if it wasn't just me. I have seven other cousins, and I cannot think of another time when any of them would be asked to do anything, much less actually do it. I have three cousins that live in state, and I saw each of them several times when there, and I never saw them do anything for anyone else. Even worse they made more work for everyone. Including one cousin who had her Grandmother and Mother make her spaghetti and home made meatballs, and didn't bother to even help clean up the dishes afterwards. She just sat at the table flipping through the Avon catalog while the rest of us cleaned up.
And for some reason all us cousins are called equal, a term that is laughably inaccurate. It's just some cousins are more equal than other. I certainly felt that this weekend, when I bent over backwards to help everyone, but was still low man on the totem pole with these people. Several of them took great pride in making comments about my gender, or things that had happened from my past, although they are hardly spotless in that aspect either. I guess I'm hurt by the disrespect? I mean I try to be nice and kind to my family, but they seem to have no concern for me at all.

I won't lie, there were nights I lay awake trying to understand it all, I even cried one night over it, but I think I'm beginning to accept it. This is just how my family works, and I am just a cog in the wheel. I will say that I was miserable when up there, and I will never, ever volunteer to go there again, those people have abused my good nature for the last time. I might as well help people who actually care about what I help them with.
Needless to say I was pretty happy when my father showed up last Friday. And I wasn't happy about the fact he brought me some present, I was certainly ready to get out of there. We left around noon on Saturday and we rolled in about 1:30 last night, and went straight to bed. I got up around seven, and have been on the go since then. So suffice to say, I'm pretty exhausted. So if anything I've written today doesn't make sense, that's why.

Now what does all this have to do with you, you ask? Well, you see, right now I have two entire loads of stuff from up north to sort though and deal with. While most of the stuff isn't mine enough of it is to give me plenty of cleaning and organizing for the next week or two. My room looks like something exploded in it since I have so much stuff on every free surface. So right now all my sewing projects are on hold. Even now it would take too long to even unbury the sewing machine much less sew with it. But do not fear, even though there's not going to be any sewing going on, I still have plenty to share with you. Each day until I've sorted out enough to actually do any project I will share with you something new, and I do have some interesting things to share.
And if you've read this far, God bless you. This took forever to type.

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