Well, I can't say I expected for us to all fall apart after Nan passed away. If anything, I thought we'd at least see the year through before facing facts that without her, we really are just a fractured unit; a stack of bricks with no cement to keep us locked tight. I thought we were stronger than that. But – we're not.
A family member passing away is an opportunity to bind closer together with other relatives. And, while that may be true, there certainly are fallouts in the crafting of tighter bonds post-grievance. I, for one, have never felt more subtracted from the ones I used to call my family. These days I don't even know half of you or what you're even doing.
My own brothers – mythical to me in this day and age. Flesh and blood means nothing most mornings, and post-2019 I've started forgetting why I still refer to them as "brothers" at all. It's not like I ever see them. I know they're snug together and happy to plod along, and, honestly, I've started to look past that. I'm happy to disband from a trio I was never really a cornerstone of.
Dad – I can't say I've seen you in years. either. And the same goes for everybody else in the clique I used to call my family. And, whilst I'd like to believe it was because of a more serious reason, I can't help but think it's because I'm simply not a right fit for the household name. Heck, I'm starting to think I never even was. I don't belong in a place where literally nobody knows who I am.
My wife. My kids; two of which have never even been held by anybody other than their own Mum and Dad; they literally don't know anybody outside of our own four walls. Dad, they don't see you as a grandfather, nor even know of your existence. Aunties, uncles, cousins – everybody in the "immediate family" – all nowhere to be seen and lost beyond repair. That's horrible to think, sure – but reality nonetheless; a reality I'm detaching myself from as time marches forward.
We moved for a reason: nobody cared about us anymore. Nobody came to visit. Nobody invited us out. Nobody made the effort to know us. And that doesn't only go for family, either. That goes for everybody my wife and I knew in our old city. Where were you? Where were the reasons to keep us there and within reach? Because, honestly – we couldn't find any to stop us from uprooting and moving elsewhere.
I'd be lying if I said I didn't missed certain things. Sure I do. I miss a lot of things. But, it's the things I miss that I've started to slowly replace with things that my own family can provide. A party. A barbecue. A simple night in with a deck of cards. All of that has been filled thanks to the ones closest to me in my own household. And, honestly, they are all I need and more.
To me, family are the ones who're there beside you. And, this is me saying that none of you are ever there. Not for me. Not for my wife. Not for Ivy, Jasper or Clover. And because of that – we have no reason to latch onto you anymore. And that's just the way it is.
Dad, I honestly hope that building the "family" business has paid off. I hope that one day you'll wish you made the effort to meet your grandkids and witness them grow instead of watching the books tick over. I can't say I didn't want the same thing. I'd love for the kids to have a granddad – I really would. But they probably never will. Work comes first – family comes second. That's something I feel I've received from you these past however many years.
Times are moving forward, and we've disbanded as a family. These days my wife and I have our minds set on horizons far past the borders of the once renowned family city. Nothing is really holding us down to that place anymore. Nothing is drawing us closer to you all. And this time next month – we could be three hundred miles apart and feel no further away from you.
I guess, what I'm really trying to say is – is this goodbye?