J, TA’s sister, came over for roast chicken last night and ended up in a bone-picking session with TA. Families, eh? Motives, patterns, events, emotions, “facts”, unintended consequences – it’s a boiling cauldron of spicy gumbo even in the most straight-forward, “normal” families – and who has one of those? Throw in religion, sibling rivalry, financial struggle, business failure, mental breakdown, lack of communication and distance…and, well, it gets complicated. Not so much chicken soup for the soul as grist for the therapy mill.
I tried to stay out of it although, of course, I bring my own prism of experience and opinions to the party. Marriage, for better or worse, is about joining families just as much as it is about uniting two people. I’m a TA as much as he is a Badger now. But, as TA reminds me, it’s not about me and so I bite my tongue and try to facilitate rather than opine – hoping that J will give TA a fresh perspective.
The pupster – as an innocent reflection of the parents we might be – was referenced by all. I wonder if he sensed the energy shift in the room as TA and J broached the subject of their childhood. Teething, he gnawed a twist of rawhide as his pack elders chewed the fat. Halfway through the evening TA handed me a tiny pearl with one half of the root missing – the pupster’s first milk tooth to leave the nest – a core of dried blood visible through the translucence.
This morning, listening to the news, I picked over the carcass and rescued the wishbone. I offered half to TA to pull, shut my eyes and made the same wish I always make. Snap. I wonder what TA wishes for? I got lucky, for once, and in my hand was the bigger half. Not that it makes any difference since my wish is always on TA’s behalf anyway.