Up north, part 2

The fortune cookie luck that is ordained for me has apparently not kicked in yet. But I did survive the weekend with the whole extended family and the weather was great. If I do get smitten with good luck maybe I would donate a little of it to my mom. She just missed getting hit by a tornado on her trip back home. Maybe she was lucky that she missed the storm, but she was really pushing her luck.  

I was thinking a lot this weekend about coping mechanisms and how they change over time. My brother Mark seemed to cope with being around the family by drinking. I woke up early on Saturday morning and came out to sit by the fire at 6:30 AM. Mark was on his second beer by then which concerned me.     Other than that, he seems happy. He recently got engaged and is planning a fall wedding. His fiancé is good for him, I hope that he can bring out the best in her as well. I just worry about them. Mark is so much like my dad that I think being a husband and father will be challenging. It can be challenging for the most patient people in the world. I hope and pray that if there is any genetic factor involved in autism that any future children will not be effected by it. 

Luke has two little girls ages 5 and 7. I watched them play in the water, remembering when I was right between their age and watching my younger brothers in the water. It really gives me perspective on how young I was when given great responsibility. Luke worries that his kids hate him because he is a perfectionist who demands perfection. Luke is a great dad. I sometimes feel like my kids hate me and I don’t demand perfection. I don’t demand much of anything. I want them to have something that I didn’t have, a childhood. 

I felt like I could really relate with Luke. We are so much alike as adults even though we coped with life in totally different ways in our youth. The pendulum took us from our extremes to a common middle. He is no longer the party animal. He is serious and thoughtful. I came out of my shell. I no longer feel a lot of anxiety about spending time with the extended family. I am hoping that we can finally forge a relationship. 

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