Whenever I look at a National Geographic and start flipping through it I feel a sense of nostalgia. It’s something so simple, yet complex, with the set of emotions. A kind of happiness, confusion, a smile, frown, and then I set it back down. My grandpa got me National Geographic when I was a kid and I got all of his old copies. That was one of my most beloved things I’d get in the mail, I didn’t really read books at the time, but I love the pictures, I loved nature and science, so it was something I looked forward to when I was younger. I didn’t have toys really as a kid so it was my favorite toy.
I had a complicated relationship with my grandpa. Which is not the best because I had a messed up relationship with the few grandparents I had/have. To say the least when he passed away I didn’t know quite what to think. I wanted to go back to simpler days when relationships weren’t so complex, where I didn’t know as much, where getting a National Geographic would make my day is so many ways. My brother actually has some personality traits of my grandpa… he tends to not be happy where he is, the grass is always greener, he can hold a grudge like you wouldn’t believe, and he plays dirty too. He can make perfect impressions of my grandpa and what he sounded like.
It was weird, picking up a National Geographic and having so much hit me. I remember going through my grandpa’s old boxes of the magazines and I’d look through them so many times. I didn’t even touch on the memories of him in the nursing home and us taking him into our own care for 2 years. To say the least it was one of the hardest experiences my family ever went through. The way my Mom was treated was beyond unacceptable by my grandpa, but she took it, and dealt with it, because she told me it’s what her mom would want her to do. My Mom believed her mother would want to take care of her father, so she did just that. We went through my grandpa’s stuff that he had kept and I came across some cards that I had sent him in New York. He kept every single card I ever sent him. I almost cried in that moment as my Mom and I went through his old stuff.
I just don’t understand how he could treat my mother the way he did, how my father can treat my mom the way he currently does, and I don’t forgive people for that. It was not a case on my grandfather’s part of just old age, he’d been acting the way he did for more than 20 years. I know someone can say it’s not people, it’s your family, but even if it’s not physical abuse verbal can be a certain kind of terrible too, especially when it happens every single day. Me personally, I don’t put up with it. I will never put up with anyone ever treating me with disrespect, yelling at me, calling me names, or other crap. There was a time in my life where I’d take it as a kid and as a teenager but now that is not happening.
I’m the type of person to move on, the type of person to step into someone’s life and disappear without a trace. It’s how I’ve always been, I make friendships and lose them, but in the end I have my Mom and my brother and my Mom to me is like my best friend. We read each other’s minds we’re so close. Family is my anchor, my stronghold, because I lose contact and I’m used to being a lone person. It’s how I was since I was a kid, I’m extremely sociable, but I don’t let many people in.