A cousin’s death

My cousin died in a terrible car wreck today. More than likely, he’d been drinking. It’s very sad. The drinking and the death. He was not yet 50.

My mother said at the end of our conversation that she hoped her sister, my aunt, would take this opportunity to lay down the burden that her son was.

She actually said that.

I have a feeling that’s what I am to my mother. I’m a burden to be endured not a son to be loved.

6 thoughts on “A cousin’s death

  1. First off, don’t extrapolate what your Mother thinks about your nephew and her sister’s relationship into a definition of yours and hers relationship. You don’t know that.

    Second, as I told you years ago, if you can stay sober and sane through your family, you can stay sober and sane through anything–war, pestilence, disease. Your family is adept at pushing your buttons because they installed them.

  2. I’m so sorry for your loss.

    I’d guess that your aunt will grieve the loss of her son just as much as if he had been the CEO of a corporation or whatever she dreamed he would be – or whatever he once dreamed he would be. Perhaps her grief will go hidden if she hears too many of those “lay down your burden” messages, but it will be real grief nonetheless.

    Are you a burden? No. What you may miss is that while you often feel burdened by your own consciousness, your inner wisdom rises and inspires others on our own journeys. Think what a narrow, shallow woman your mother might have been had she never met you.

    In this regard I’m not sure time is really linear, moving inexorably forward. I think we expand others’ minds and hearts going backward in time too.

    Sending peaceful thoughts to your family at this terribly difficult time.

  3. What you mother said was unconsciousable, considering the condition you are burdened with and struggle daily to overcome. It was careless at best.

    I grieve for your loss, but at the same time, you are alive; you are trying. I’m sorry…I cannot help but take what your mother said so thoughtlessly as a personal reflection of the relationship I share with my own parents. Make no mistake: I know they love me, and I know they are proud of how I have managed to overcome the most horrific aspects of my illness (it took 30 years), but I know I am a burden; the feeling that I am be simply be endured until I destroy myself is powerful. It is devastating, as I worship both my mother and father and know that my two bright and brilliantly successful brothers further accentuate the embarrassment I have always been to the family.

    I feel they love me, but I feel that love is an obligation to a child with no promise.

    I am so sorry. I feel your distress, Dearheart.

  4. I stumbled across your blog–and this was the first thing I read. I have a cousin in a similar circumstance, who my mom said a similar thing about my aunt. It haunted me for years. After my suicide attempt, I had a chance to talk with her about it, and she had a different meaning. Still not one I subscribe to, but not what I thought she meant. For my mom, and possibly your aunt? it was more about letting go of hurtful things, but my mom always wished my aunt could do that now. Hope that made a bit of sense. And, either way, that does not make it true.

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