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Family
By toxicfur (Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 09:50:34 AM EST) morals, critters, brother, adulthood (all tags)
In which I question my moral compass and in which I report on a rather frightening phone call from my brother.


Pets and Their People

In my last diary, I mentioned that my grandfather has acquired a 7-year-old dog (named Freckles - gah) to keep him company in the vast emptiness of his house. I think this is a good thing. However, my grandfather is 87 years old, and there is a better than average chance that he will predecease Freckles.

I worry about this for two reasons. First, the poor dog has already lost his first person through death, and I don't want him to feel abandoned again. My Teh Dawg was abandoned at least twice before I got her (and for a week at a time, I'd occasionally "abandon" her at my mom's house). She still has issues six years later, and cries mournfully when I leave her somewhere. I don't want Freckles to feel that way.

The second reason I'll discuss momentarily.

The week my mom told me she is dying, I only saw her cry twice - once when my brother P. started crying and once when she was worrying about what would happen to her Jack Russell when she was gone. I reassured her on that point - I'm happy to take Rusti if I need to. I won't give her to strangers, I'll take great care of her, and I'll try to fill the void I'm sure my mom's absence will leave.

I really don't want my mom to die before Rusti.

Teh Dawg is enough for me. I'm much more of a cat person than a dog person, and though I love my dog and my mom's dog, I don't really want another canine living in my house. I also will not allow these dogs to be abandoned entirely. If I don't take one or both of them, then it would only be because one of my brothers insisted that they wanted the dog.

I worry, though, that this bit of practicality is crass in the face of my grandfather's age and my mom's cancer. What kind of person thinks, "Oh please, just hang on until after your dog is gone"? Somehow, this feels worse than mentally dividing up the assets. Why should my mom and grandfather, in the midst of their pain or old age, have to deal also with the loss of a pet?



My Brother J, the Cop

Right after ana and I got home from the grocery store and liquor store today, the phone rang. I groaned. I didn't feel like talking to anybody, and the phone is rarely for ana. When the caller id informed me it was my youngest brother, though, I answered. I hadn't talked to him in a couple of months, and I miss him. Also, he usually only calls when he has something to tell me, a thesis statement of sorts to guide the course of our conversation. I've never been one of those people who just likes to chat on the phone.

His news today is that, at the age of 23, he is moving out of my mom's house. While this should be excellent news, I worry. J does a lot for my mom and my grandfather, in the midst of working full-time as a police officer and contracting with the local ISP in his copious free time. I worry about my mom being there alone, but I'm happy for J.

The house he's renting is old, built in the early 1900s, but it's in reasonably good shape, he claims, and it comes with a washer/dryer, fridge, dining room table, dishwasher, and central heat and air. Three bedrooms, 1 1/2 bath, and 8 1/2 acres of land. For $450/month. His ability to find deals like this one borders on the supernatural.

The other part of his news is why he's renting the house. "I wanted to get a place and get settled in before JC and I get married." LOLWHAT? He and his girlfriend (whose name, inconveniently for my purposes, begins with a J) have been dating for just over a year. She is not quite 19 years old. She's very sweet, in that rural North Carolina sort of way, and her parents adore J. But marriage? They don't even know who they are yet. And they still won't by the planned wedding date of May, 2007.

J was 10 years old when I left home for college, and in a lot of ways, I have a hard time seeing him as a man. Not just a man, but a good man who has his head on straight. I'm trying very hard not to become my mother in this situation. I don't want extend a cloud of negativity the way my mom does when confronted with her children's relationships. Still, though. I worry.

I do hope he asks me to be a groomsman if they actually do get married. I think I'd look great in a tux. I'm going to have to put my foot down if I have to be a bridesmaid though. I can't even imagine what sort of taffeta and tulle creation would emerge from JC's mom's sewing machine.

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Family, Extended | 6 comments (6 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback
Ease up on the boy. by ammoniacal (4.00 / 6) #1 Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 10:03:03 AM EST
Everyone needs a starter marriage, or two.

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

I know, I know. by toxicfur (2.00 / 0) #2 Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 10:08:00 AM EST
I would've had one, too, if same-sex marriage had been legal in 1995.
--
damn it, lif eis actually really *far4 too good at tghe momnent, shboyukbnt;t whilen. --Dr Thrustgood
[ Parent ]
So that's what I did wrong... by NoMoreNicksLeft (2.00 / 0) #3 Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 10:13:24 AM EST

--
Do not look directly into laser with remaining good eye.
[ Parent ]
you would by Kellnerin (4.00 / 1) #4 Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 11:42:29 AM EST
look awesome in a tux.

Your moral compass is fine. It's empathy that makes you worry in the first place, and also the fact that you recognize the limits of what you're able to do. It's a tough position to be in.

In a not really related aside, when D and I were in New York we saw one of those ads for POM -- I've seen them around here too, but I hadn't seen this particular one, with the tagline, "Outlive Your Spouse." I pointed this out to D, and it was about the most offensive thing both of us had seen in a while. I mean, what kind of goal is that? Is this ad targetted only toward people who don't love the person they're married to? "I'll live longer, but I don't really care if you do, honey"? Ugh.

--
"Slick Loons Cow Stumbling Readers." —toxicfur
I may be an expensive mushroom. —iGrrrl

Re: Compliments by toxicfur (4.00 / 1) #5 Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 12:03:05 PM EST
Thanks. :-)

Re: POM. Hrmph. We drink that stuff, and, in small quantities, it's really good if you like pomegranates. The outliving your spouse thing is just weird. So if you have two married people who *both* drink POM to outlive each other, then what? Is this the key to immortality? I can see the Herald's take now:

Social Security Juice Drain!

Lawmakers mull pomegranate guilt for bankruptcy.

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damn it, lif eis actually really *far4 too good at tghe momnent, shboyukbnt;t whilen. --Dr Thrustgood
[ Parent ]
duelling spouses by Kellnerin (4.00 / 1) #6 Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 02:53:53 PM EST
That's what I imagine. Each member of a couple sees the ad, thinks, "aha!" Sneaks off to procure the product, keeping it hidden away in secret so the other doesn't find out. Until the day comes, one of them is found out, and confronted: "What's this? You're trying to outlive me?" "Oh darling, I didn't mean it." "No, no, I was supposed to outlive you!" "What? You lying, cheating, no-good ..."

--
"Slick Loons Cow Stumbling Readers." —toxicfur
I may be an expensive mushroom. —iGrrrl
[ Parent ]
Family, Extended | 6 comments (6 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback