For the first time in many years, we traveled to Texas for Thanksgiving. I typically visit Texas during the summer in the sweltering heat and on my last visit decided to wait until the weather was kinder. Turns out this was an excellent year to wait as Texas experienced a ridiculous number of consecutive days of over 100 degrees. No thank you!
Visiting family is always a dicey proposition. It can be very good or it can be very bad. Family is the group of people who know you the very best and if you are fortunate love you in spite of this fact. I am truly blessed because I count myself as one that is loved. How they show their love is altogether another story, but I have chosen to believe that they love me and I them.
I particularly enjoyed spending time with my two brothers, especially the three of us together. There is something about sharing a childhood with someone that bonds you forever, similar to veterans who survive a war and live to tell about it without the death part. Not that our childhood was a war zone, but let's just say we had some interesting times. In childhood, you pretty much have to roll with whatever comes your way. That's why it's nice to have some traveling companions with you on the rollercoaster ride. Even though they sometimes throw up all over you, like the summer when Mark got me fired from my job and that was after I had gotten him his job there! It was the one and only time I was fired but the scars remain. Or like the time he took the car from where I parked it when I was at the movies and went on a joy ride when he didn't have his driver's license yet. Siblings witness and perhaps even contribute to the forming of our personalities or at least they uncover them, depending on whether you are in the nature or nurture camp.
I adore both of my brothers who are as different as they come. On my visit home, I spent time sipping wine, snacking on Brie and crackers, playing cards with John, soft music playing in the background. At Mark's house I found myself hanging out outside by the grill surrounded by dead animal head trophies and his monster truck,laughing hysterically as he recounted events of our childhood. I couldn't be prouder of the men they have grown up to be or love them any more. So glad to have them in my life. I wouldn't even trade them for a sister.