I had to give my husband a pre trip pep talk. He doesn't enjoy going into my grandmother's house for several reasons. One, it's about the size of a matchbox and it's crowded with collectibles, furniture and a few animals. Over the years, the pets she has given a home to have come and gone but they have left their smell behind. Since my grandmother cannot get out of her bed, the cleanliness of the house has gone down hill. My aunt who still lives with her does not care to keep a tidy house and fights about being told she should do better.
My mentally handicapped aunt is another reason my husband and father do not enjoy going to visit. She argues with my grandmother, gets loud and makes everyone uncomfortable. After a half hour of being in her small house, with ten extra people the tensions rise and my dad gets agitated. My dad starts to show his a** and it only gets worse.
This trip was no different than any other, so why did I think that planning to eat her birthday meal with her instead of going out and bringing her food back would be any better? Everyone arrived at different times to give grandma time to spend and take with each of us. I made a special point to talk with her and listen. I usually do, since I think I'm the only one besides my own children, who enjoy being naive about the situation and just want to be my grandmother's grand daughter.
It wasn't too long into the afternoon and we were cooking dinner, peeling potatoes and my aunt realized we were not going out to dinner. She started complaining about being sick, something she apparently does when she is not getting her way. Halfway through dinner and my grandmother makes a phone call to call her young friend, that she calls her "family" to come over. She wants her to meet us.
I had no idea this was going on until I came back into the house from being outside. My aunt says "Tiffany, here's a little baby for you. You said you wanted a little baby.". I wasn't quite sure what the hell she was talking about. Here was standing this young woman about 22 years old holding her little baby girl and she says hi. It was very uncomfortable. Who was this woman?
It pissed my dad off. He was mad that his mother had to call this woman to come over while her real family was in town and then dote all over her baby. Right in front of us. My mother was irritated that my grandma called this woman her family in front of us. Really? My husband was mad because here was his children, her great grandchildren to visit her and she payed little attention to them. What is wrong with family???
My mother complained that no one spent anytime with grandma. Really??? How could we when this girl she invited over, didn't even have the decency to move herself out of MY grandmother's room when we came into her room singing "happy birthday" while presenting a cake. She sat right by her bedside like she was family. It was beyond uncomfortable.
We couldn't wait to go home. It's sad to feel that way but when you're not important in some one's life why try? I guess she feels the same way.
We don't visit often enough. It's what we get for staying away too long. It's what she gets for refusing to move closer to family so we can take care of her. She is replacing us. It's sad. It makes me mad. She is my last living grandmother and some one is trying to take my place. It's not right.