It wasn't the typical run-of-the-mill bad day. Ansley was an absolute joy, and very easy to handle, going down easily and briefly waking about 3:30 for her paci.
I didn't lose my job, or bounce a check. I didn't get a ticket, or even stub my toe (though I did drop a very heavy coffee mug on my foot that got me dangerously close to saying a very not nice word).
I didn't burn dinner, or have a huge argument with the hubs. But I did cry my way home.
I normally don't use this blog for such negative purposes as complaining about people, but it's my blog, so get over it.
Growing up, I spent much of my free time with an older cousin. I pretty much lived at her house during the summers and school breaks. This was how it worked, up until about 7th grade.
We normally had a good time, but moments would come when my aunt would have to send me home, because we had obviously spent way too much time together and were getting on each other's last nerve. But, we had fun, and I have some great memories.
My first trip to Disney world and Sea World was with her. My first major-league baseball game was with her. My first trip to the Atlanta Zoo was with her.
I have some bad memories too. Like when I made her mad and she dumped a cherry slushi on my head at the Atlanta Zoo. Or when she showed me these awesome, HUGE, long cotton stickers that her mom used, and had me stick them all over the living room walls (ok, they were pads and that was actually pretty funny). Or when she told me my parents only got married because I was born.
She was an only child, and we were pretty much like sisters, even though she's about 6 years older than me.
I hit middle school, and started to turn into my own person. I would spend my summers with friends, and started to go out on my own. I started traveling, and seeing things for myself, all while she seemed to look for love in all the wrong places.
There was never really a huge falling out that I can trace our problems back to. No argument, no name calling, nothing. But somehow, I became the focus of her distaste.
She has always loved kids, and after much difficulty conceiving, she found herself pregnant with twins thanks to IVF. When I announced my first pregnancy, and discovered my little one was due just a couple weeks before hers, I was excited about having someone to share my experience with. No congratulations, only a cold shoulder.
And when I found out that I lost the baby, almost half-way through my pregnancy, no comforting words from someone who had experienced similar difficulties.
Maybe I'm just dense, but I didn't really think too much of it until last summer. Some of our family had ventured down from Indiana and over from Arizona. Despite being so far apart, we can have a great time when all together.
I was pregnant. Very pregnant. They were only in town for a few days, and we were planning on going out to dinner one evening. She called to ask how many reservations were needed, and once she realized that my mother and I were planning on attending, the plans were canceled and dropped, as far as I knew. I found out from my sister that everyone was getting together at my cousin's house.
Maybe I shouldn't have invited myself, but I did. And I showed up. And my aunt from Arizona was all about me being pregnant, talking about babies and feeling over-active Ansley playing soccer with my organs.
Several things happened that day. She would not be in the same room with me. And when she was griping that no one would go pick up the pizzas, leaving her to do it, she did not even acknowledge my multiple offers to go pick up the pizza. So, I left. I took my sister, brother-in-law and brother and left.
Fast forward to last night. Same family is in visiting. We are all enjoying our evening at my grandparents, spending time with cousins and second cousins.
I'm not sure what happened after that. It involved her not even looking at me, and going from room to room to make sure she wasn't near me, ignoring anyone who played with my kiddo.
And, so I left. And I cried. All the way home.
And it kills me. Because as much as I want to shrug it off and simply say "Oh well, her loss," I know it isn't. It's my loss too. And it's Ansley's loss.
My parents have always told me it's a jealousy issue. Which I find ironic since she grew up getting everything she asked for, while I enjoyed her hand-me-downs and toys from Goodwill. It's also been described as sibling rivalry, but I've never experienced anything like that with my sisters. We fought like sisters do growing up, but we are all extremely close now, and we even say "I love you."
I've bent over backwards to try to make it better. And sometimes it seems like it is, but I know it isn't. And it hurts me. Because I can see Paul's family get together, and all the cousins gather round, and share their funny stories. And laugh together for hours. And that doesn't happen with me or any of my cousins.
If you made it to the end, good for you. I left a ton out, but didn't feel I wanted to completely air out my dirty laundry. And I thought about not even writing this, since it is a public blog, and my cousin could find her way here. But, I'm ok with that. Because from everything I've seen, since it has to do with me, she'll steer clear.