I was bullied in grammar school by two older boys who made my life hell. One day, I was walking down the street and saw them coming toward me from the opposite direction, on their bikes. “Oh poop,” I thought. When they got close, I looked them in the eye and said, “Why don’t you just kiss my a--!” They stood there for a bit, shocked, and then began to laugh. As they rode off on their bikes, one of them said, “You know, w----, you’re all right!” Although I was no good at defending myself physically, making your bully laugh sometimes works just as well.
When I think of such stories, I am always grateful for having grown up when I did, with whom I did, and where I did. And for having parents and family who did not even try to shield us from reality. So many kids today enter life at a disadvantage.On siblings who don’t help with an elderly parent’s care:
Five years ago she was moved from her apartment into assisted living and it was very hard for her being confined to one room. I became the “sole” family caregiver. My two sisters would simply say, if you need help, just let me know. I got angrier and angrier as time went on until my husband suggested (strongly) that I just let it go and give to my mom what time and effort I could.
Her last two years were very special to me. I learned things about her life that I had not known before. On her last day we received a call that her death was getting close and my husband and I went to be with her.
I called my sisters, who told me they didn’t need to come because they had said their goodbyes. I had the privilege of stroking her cheek, telling her I loved her and would miss her. I had the privilege of hearing her try to speak and to see a single tear run down her cheek.
My anger is gone now and all I feel is sadness that my sisters missed so much joy they could have had during Mother’s last days. I will never understand their behavior, but I guess I don’t have to.