To Thine Own Family, Be True…

For those that don’t know — I was born and raised in Miami Florida — code name: South Beach Barbie to Michi – and only moved to NYC bout 5 yrs ago.

I left behind a very large family (Mom’s got 7 brothers and 2 sisters and procreation is just a step below breathing) that I am super super close with them– I talk with one member at least once a day, but more like 2 or 3 times a day.

familyFamily feuds are nothing new and my family is not a statistic for the exception.  Papa *my grandfather, and my Dad didn’t speak for like 8 years when I was growing up.  Not sure exactly what sparked the extended silent treatment but they always had a very volatile relationship.  Both stubborn, both argumentative, both bull-head, both very very macho, macho maaaan, I want to be …….

Webster’s Dictionary:

Testosterone – created and ill-managed by Glazebrook Men

Without going into the details of their historic quarreling, the common denominator in their problems seemed to be the struggle for power…  Who could assert more authority over the other.  Who could get their way?  Who could prove the other more wrong?  Who was the alpha male of the pack?

Sometime in 1993 my dad and Papa found peace with each other, or at least buried the hatchet enough that a Glazebrook family gathering ensued, much to the excitement of the rest of the family.  We gathered for the first time as one big family for Christmas in 1993 with high hopes for many more times together in the future.

Papa died in November 1995, one month before we’d all meet again for our second Christmas together — thus, the 2nd time we all were in the same room together….

— was at Papa’s funeral.

I believe, if you asked my dad’s heart what mattered more to him in retrospect: the 8 years of silence or that 1 week of Christmas dinners together  ….  a sadness and a silence screaming with regret would make the obvious winner quite clear.

Course the testosterone flowing to his brain may verbally give a different answer, but I know deep down in my daddy’s heart who he really is … a man that loves more than he let’s on.

Why are you writing about all this Gail?  It’s TGI Friday – eat drink & be Merry, no?

As some may know, for the last year I’ve seen my company, a great friendship and a family ripped apart by greed, power, money & betrayal happen.  I can’t disclose the details behind it but I have enough love in my heart to cringe at all the hate and anger, fighting and pain it’s caused – that will never equate to enough dollars and cents/sense.

I don’t care how poor a man is, if he has a family, he’s rich …

I’m saddened to see so often a family ripped apart by the Green, rather than held together by the Red.

My father and I can be pretty volatile with one another as the battle of growing up and parental control continues to brew even as I light my late 20s b-day candles….

The family – that dear octopus from whose tentacles we never quite escape, nor, in our inmost hearts, ever quite wish to.    ~Dodie Smith

I feel fortunate however to have been born a female.  It seems the maternal sensitivity that women often possess, helps me see the senselessness of extended bitterness and lost time and allows me to say a cheerful "good morning dad" despite a bitter clashing of words the night before.

My dad has frequently commented on this phenomenon of "I don’t want to fight with you" as it goes against my Glazebrook blood.  He chalks it up to adolescent nostalgia…I believe it’s mature rationalization that the fighting isn’t as important as the laughing.

Who’s right?

We both cry out, "I AM!"  :)  (that’s a true Glazebrook)

When’s someone’s 6 feet below, I think what I fear most is the scale tipping in regret’s favor, rather than tearful smiles of memories gone by.

I don’t want to stand over his grave and cry, "I wished I’d just let it go…."

It is not flesh and blood but the heart which makes us fathers and sons. ~Johann Schiller mom

I write this post because I too often see my friends and family forget how important family is and how short time with them can be.  I’m reminding myself not to take them for granted nor lower them to petty fighting…

How often do you think back to your childhood and roll your eyes at something your parents did, or question a choice they made for you, or doubt the way they handled a situation about you, your other parent, or a sibling, etc.

How often do you judge their parental skills?

As I’ve gotten older and continue to mature my thoughts on parental motives, I find I treasure more and mistrust their motives less.

It’s sad how a wedge driven into one family makes you hug your own that much tighter — but it does.

Give your parents more thanks.  Give them more room for error and consider that many of the decisions they made for you, were made with loving you and protecting you in mind.

I’m not saying parents are always right — (hardly!!)  But when someone meets my dad or hears certain stories about him, sometimes I get asked, "why do you put up with that?!?!"

Easy.

Because I love him, for better or worse and I know EVERY decision he has EVER made for me, had the best intentions, regardless if it was the right method.

“Man punishes the action, but God the intention”

It was a tough week for me.  The battle within my company has been a difficulty I’ve had to swallow for nearly a year now.  I have no ill-will towards either party, just remorse for the spontaneous and legally binding silence between myself and my old TRI family.

People always ask, "Gail, why didn’t you go work for one of the Big 4 accounting firms?"

I didn’t want to be a number, a cubicle, a small piece of a big pie.  I didn’t want corporate shenanigans, punch cards, and silly Corporate rules from a handbook.  I didn’t want to be a cow in the cattle – Mooooooooo ….

I wanted to be a part of a quasi family of workers.  Small, tight-knit, a place you walked in and everyone asked, "Hey, how was your weekend, you play good in that tourney?" They asked, because they knew who I was aside from, "that blonde girl, from the 3rd wing, on floor whatever, department blah blah, section :P"

(And please don’t make the assumption that I have some big problem with people that did chose to go to a Big 4 firm or a large corporation — it just wasn’t what I was looking for.)

It appears my company’s battle will continue for more months ahead.  I’m thankful for a brief hello from an old quasi friend.  Thankful, yet further tormented by his ill fortune.  I hope they all find peace soon and perhaps, see the bigger picture.

There are always three sides to every story –

– your side, my side and the truth –

and the truth will set you free…..

I’ll be MIA (not Miami, missing in action) for a while – I’m heading to Europe with my family for some very important quality time.  I know some feel nauseous at the thought of two weeks with the parents (my brother for one) but for me, I want the tearful smiling memories.

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~ by g2 on August 5, 2009.

One Response to “To Thine Own Family, Be True…”

  1. Holy Crap! No wonder you’re so gorgeous! Look at your parents. Cute post, babe. Thanks for sharing.

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