Kampung girl at heart

Location: Alor Star, Kedah, Malaysia

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

mending a dysfunctional family

I am a pretty tough woman, nothing much fazed or scared me...well..maybe the visit to the dentist or dealing with my taxes...but nothing and i mean absolutely nothing exhaust or upset me more than when i have to deal with my own family, sisters and brothers.

growing up, i knew that my family wasn't perfect but i thought our ties were quite strong to withstand anything. we loved each other, don't we? i was very confident that we would never never ever be be divided and end up like some of the families i knew of who remain hostile til their dying day.

I was naive and i was wrong. my parents died and my siblings quarreled amongst them. small argument over petty things escalated into big ones and one by one, they took sides and ended up being divided into two main camps while a few of us became the non-aligned.our nephews and nieces grew up without knowing their uncles and aunties and i felt alone. i looked at happy families and i wondered why mine wasn't. i see sisters and brothers hugging and kissing each other, visiting each other and having family gatherings during festivals and holidays while i opted to spend these days alone.

it was stalemate and i got so so tired of them, i stayed away and led my own life. being sent here is a blessing too for i didn't have to deal with them on daily basis.

But for how long? maturity have taught me a lot and i've learnt to be rational and detached when dealing with so many issues and aspects of my life but ah man..my own siblings? i get so very very mad with some of my sisters and brothers i just want to shake em so hard their teeth rattle.

but i can't run away anymore. the news of my brother's kidney problem last month shook me. we're all getting older and soon, we will die one by one. I don't want to wait until its too late before we make amends.

it wasn't easy. i had cold feet many many times but i decided to put my faith in allah that he would help heal my family. took two weeks leave and met my siblings one by one during a two weeks vacation recently.

some of the encounters were very fruitful and easy while others were fraught with undercurrents. a lot were said but with few sisters, these past hurt were still left unsaid.

i wish they would just let bygones be bygones, accept and understand that we might not be capable of changing and move on instead of continually harping on the past.

perhaps it was easier for them to cling to the past, to old hurt rather than looking inward, assessing the damage it had done to our family and understanding that maybe they were to be blamed for the quarrels and hurts.

I wish i have a magic wand that i can just wave and they will turn around, forgive each other and have a big 'bollywood' style reunion with music dancing and all. i hated bollywood movies with a passion but i am willing to let that pass if it means my family will become united again.

i tried..oh god..i did try. i am just hoping that given time, we will be a family again.


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