I asked, and he came

Last night, I felt the sickest I’ve felt since December 2012, when I supposedly got “allergies” when I went to Melbourne for the first time. This time, it was a different kind of “sick,” though — my entire body was in pain, my throat was sore, I hacked up all this phlegm, and I had a massive headache. I went to bed at 7:30pm and didn’t get up until 8am the next day. While I was in bed, I wondered what caused me to get this sick. Was it all the time I’ve spent flying in the last month — for work, then family, then vacation? Was it the terrible and uncomfortable hospital stays with my dad and the cold of my parents’ house in San Francisco? Or maybe, it’s all the above, in addition to all the unnecessary stress that my parents have imposed on me with their constant guilt tripping on my mom’s side and my dad’s stubbornness and laziness to get his persistent cough checked out by a doctor? I felt helpless last night and thought, I need to see my brother.

And so he came. He doesn’t always come when I ask, but this time, he came in the strangest way in a dream.

I was in my parents’ kitchen, and I heard a rustling from the porch through the back room of the kitchen. I opened the porch door, and in came Ed. “What are you doing?” I asked him.

He carried a stack of dishes into the house. “I was washing dishes outside with the rain water,” he responded. He explained that because of the drought in California, our mother had asked him to leave buckets of water outside so that when it did rain, we could save and reuse the water by using it to clean dirty dishes.

I was so struck by seeing him that after he put the dishes down, I threw my arms around him and hugged him tightly. I could feel his arms come around me, too. I put my mouth close to his ear and whispered, “Don’t do that again.” I kissed the side of his face, and I let him go. He walked out of the kitchen, and I started crying.

I thought about this dream on and off throughout today, and I realized that as nonsensical as this dream was, it was really representative of the lack of logic and stupidity that exists in our family. I have to deal with our dad ignoring potential symptoms of pneumonia that could potentially kill him, our mother blaming me for apparently not caring enough to be there with them 24/7, and their general stupid decision making when it comes to all things related to their health and happiness. As much as I miss Ed, with each day that passes since my dad’s surgery, I’m even happier that he isn’t here to deal with the crap I have to deal with now.

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