Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Big Bro is coming to town.


So, my brother is coming into town today and we are going out to dinner tonight.  My brother lives in Kentucky with his wife and three children.  I typically see him when I visit around the holidays and occassionally we all take a family trip together with the parents.  This is only the fourth time I've had a meal alone with my brother in my life (that I remember).  There might be others, but it certainly isn't a common occurence. 

I think when we were really young, we got along fine.  But as we started to get older, we didn't.  When I was in 5th & 6th grade (putting Big Bro in 8th & 9th grade), I remember really feeling like my brother hated me.  Now don't get me 10 and 11 you get a little dramatic, so I feel sure that I didn't always see things as they were.  But there are some things that I do remember.  I distinctly remember being at high school basketball games (my brother was on the team starting in 10th grade, so it had to be before then), Big Bro and his friends would be sitting together in the stands and I would walk by.  They would yell "Save the Whales" at me and other various and sundry comments.  Comments that were then picked up by other kids not in his social circle.  It is entirely possible that Big Bro NEVER participated in the taunts, but he didn't stop them or make me feel like he tried to.  As much as I loved him...idolized him, really...that made me hate him a little.

As we got older, my insecurity wrapped around me like a comfy blanket, I would treasure the moments my brother gave me.  Some particularly good memories of mine were when he and his girlfriend (now wife) made the effort to come to an event of mine in high school that meant a lot to me, I visited his frat house in college when I was looking at schools (although we attended different schools, they were in the same city), & his wedding.  Those times with him, I felt included and cared about.  But there are other times where he was cold and mean...I would cry and scream and get upset.  The more I did that, the colder and meaner and more aloof he would get.

My brother is good looking, charming and has something about him that just makes people want to be with him.  I'm not immune to his charms either.  But he is also a loner.  The older I have gotten and the more I have shed my cloak of insecurity, I have come to see that my brother's actions toward me really aren't personal.  I'm beginning to see that he just wasn't exactly the person I had made him to be in my head.  Since he was good looking, charming, athletic, popular, my head that made him perfect.  But he isn' one is! 

Once he started having kids, he seemed to warm up a bit and even in more recent years, he has been much more of a joy to be around.  I think a lot of it is that I am much more secure, so I'm not constantly trying to read him...I'm just myself.  But he is also going through some hard times...I guess as we approach middle age, that happens.  It is apparent that he is making an effort with me.  There is no question about that.

When Big Bro told me he was coming to town and wanted to have dinner, I was pleased.  Yesterday, he texted me and asked if he could come by my office because he wanted to see where I worked.  I'm not going to lie...I had tears.  This is one of the only times that I can remember my brother really expressing an interest in MY life.  Over the last two years, I have become so grounded and my emotions don't rule me anymore.  I think my brother is the one person on Earth that could have brought that out in me right now.  36 years of feeling like Charlie Brown to Big Bro's Lucy can do that, I suppose.  Every time I thought he & I might become friends, he would do something to make me feel horrible about myself.  Now that I really see him trying, and I truly believe he is, my first instinct is to not kick the ball.  I don't want to get hurt. 

I'm not about to sit here and list my brothers flaws because they are irrelavent.  He is my brother and I love him with all my heart.  Not to mention, I have my own list of flaws.  I would love to have a closer relationship with him, but he has to be the one to initiate it.  And that seems to be what he is doing.  I'm taking every step for what it is and nothing more.  And I'm 100% fully at peace.  I realize now that if I'm truly happy, then no one can change that.  I want Big Bro to be that happy too.

He has placed the ball and I'm going to kick.  If he pulls it back and I fall down, I will just get right back up and dust myself off.  (I'm much more athletic these days myself, right??  :))  And I will wait for him to place the ball again.  Because that's what sisters do.


Sorry to anyone that didn't realize that Jax was my Body Bugg...oops!  :)  And to those that asked, I think you can get the old kind right now from Apex for $169 and the new smart phone compatible ones for $199.  Subscriptions to the website have different pricing, but I think I paid $80 for a year.  Looking forward to Jax 2.0...aka ??


Okay, now for the fun part!!  I went to my first ever bikini wax appointment yesterday.  I was SO nervous.  I'm not sure if I was more nervous to show my hoo-ha or that it was going to hurt like a mo-fo!!  My technician was Brandy and she was sweet as could be.  She left the room while I took off my undies (I was wearing a dress) and put on a pair of paper undies (not really sure of their purpose and then draped myself with a small towel.

When she came back in the room, she asked me if I wanted bikini, bikini plus or brazilian.  I told her I had no idea so I just picked bikini plus.  She was clinical without being cold.  We talked about a lot of things and I learned that she recently had a tummy tuck and breast implants.  I asked a lot of questions about that and she was open with her answers.  Meanwhile, the waxing was going on.  Interestingly, I was kind of okay with the openess because she was so good about it.  The pain on the other hand...while most of it was an acceptable level of pain (akin to eyebrow waxing), the skin at the top of the area right below belly??  Lord have mercy.  That hurt.  But only for a few seconds. 

So, back to the conversation.  I told her that I might be interested in a tummy tuck one day, but I was waiting to see how my skin bounced back.  I raised my shirt and showed her my belly.  I figure once you see my hoo-ha, is the belly really sacred?  She told me that my belly looked great and I didn't need a tummy tuck.  Woohoo!!  She said I had a cute belly.  HA! 

And then she was done.  She said she had made me a small landing strip and I needed to look at it because it was cute.  I couldn't help but laugh.  She also said that she thought my skin would redden more because of my sensitive skin, but she said it looked great...that other people's were much worse right after.  I put some Neosporin on it before I went to bed last night.  This morning it was tender and a little bumpy, but not too bad.  All in all, it was not a bad experience and one I expect to repeat.  Who knew?!?



Laura Belle said...

I have kinda the same relationship with my little bro. He's mister popular, gut-splitting hilarious and everyone loves him. I was pretty much opposite of that in high school. So we really didn't run in the same circles. But now that he's married and has a little one on the way, we've gotten a lot closer.

On the waxing: I was cringing when I was reading about your experience. Even though your experience wasn't that bad. I don't think I have the guts to do it. I'm still cringing.

Dawnya said...

It's nice to read about the changing dynamic of your brother/sister relationship. It is amazing that now you are happy with yourself, no one can steal you joy. I hope the relationship continues to grow.

I tried waxing...but my hair is too course. It was not a good experience.

Heather said...

Cherish your time with your brother. Some of the best times with mine were as adults doing just little things like trips to the store. I need to try a good wax. Great news about your belly!

Theresa aka Tessie Rose said...

I'm happy for you and hope that the time with your brother is wonderful. I think that he will see a new woman who is confident and secure with herself. I can't wait to hear all about it. Have fun, oh...and ouch!

Kiwigirl said...

I realised as I got older that many of the (real or imagined) slights I thought were directed at me weren't, and often were more about the other person's personality or issues rather than me... we always think it's about us, LOL! Sounds like your brother is in a different space these days, and he clearly wants to build a great relationship with you. Try not to overthink it, and just enjoy your time together! I have no idea what a body bugg is... will need to google it! So nice to hear your tummy is looking good... can spend money on indulgences instead of surgery!

Pamela E. Williams said...

Wow, I felt like I could just hug you while reading this post especially the part about your brother. I hope that he is trying to step out and extend the olive branch so to speak. I can only tell you that even though my siblings and I argue, we have always been there for each other through thick and thin. I can't imagine going through what you did when in high school with the taunting.

OAN: I want a body bug...sadly that will have to wait until I can afford it. I will make do though. One day I will get a wax. I have been a DIY girl for some time now. You and Grace made me think about the tummy tuck thing. I hope I won't need it. I got to really kick the exercise up though.

Let us know how your brother's visit goes.


Lyla said...

I am so proud of you for being confident enough with yourself to be open to a relationship that has been hurtful in the past. Vulnerability is brave-- go you!

I'm also glad to hear about the waxing. I've been tossing the idea around and I think you've convinced me. Strange question-- how long does the hair need to be?

Anonymous said...

hi there! I just wanted to say thanks for posting on my blog! and I really enjoyed reading your story about your relationship w/ your brother, I can really relate...I have 3 brothers, and one of them I have a VERY similar relationship with! I could really write a novel, but basically I'll just say that a lot of what you said hit home. You have such a great perspective though - we all have our downfalls/issues, but having a forgiving heart and looking for the good in people is such an excellent/positive way to live your life! I try to see my relationship with my brother the same way :)