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I know grief has many stages.  I just wish I could get past some of my anger emotion.  I want it not to be compounded by misplaced or misguided emotion.  I have a story to tell that sounds like sour grapes but it really isn't.  It is not about the have and the have not's and it is not about those who have more than they will ever know what to do with.  In other words you must believe me when I say I am not envious.  I am just confused and maybe hurt for lack of a better emotion to display.  I actually asked a Kossack their defininition of the Nuclear Family and I really had not paid attention to it since this family is nowhere near being a Nurclear Family.  4 generations have always been our lifestyle pretty much.  At times it has been 5 under one roof, but always 3 or 4 generations going back to my maternal grandparents.  This classwarfare of today in the families is evil and greedy.  I am not bitter just very disappointed in the downfall of the pride and respect and honor most had for seniors, veterans, children, the disabled and the handicapped in one' family.  I am diappointed in a culture that claims Focus on the Family when it is more about Focus on the Pocketbook and forget you if you are not too big to fail.  This attitude to me has already created Failure in the family.  Not Focus on the Family.

My Daddy was a hard working man.   He was not a good businessman because he was too much of a socialist thinking fellow.
The same can be said about my husband.   They are givers and never takers. In my opinion they have always had pride that was not healthy.  I could be wrong.  Maybe their pride is just right.  I don't know.  They were in my opinion cursed with the
same kind of circumstances of birth., Their family of siblings.   My husband is a good hearted man and he like my Father put on the uniform and both were seriously damaged by serving their country.   There were other family members who served in my Dad's family but during peace time.  My husband's family never went into war .  My husband actually took one's place to stand on foreign shores.  What do these men have to show for their service?  Heartache..  Pain, and little appreciation for the people they are/were.   While my Father was mocked, laughed at or ignored on his time on earth while trying to hold a job with a working man's pay, his brothers went off into the world and sought their fortune.  My Daddy worked overtime and farmed and tried to deal with seeing an entire platoon wiped out in basic training.  My husband's brothers did the same and his siblings like Daddy never enter his home.  Twenty three years and only two have ever darkened our doorways.  They did not reach to my husband before we were married either.  They think they are better than he.  He has issues that they had rather turn a blind eye to.  

 My Daddy had nightmares and startle reaction for many years and drew a small 10 percent disability for what they called nerves.   The VA cut off his pay and he was still working in a mill.  I guess they thought he was cured and that GI bill for two houses bought would be enough.  I tried for years to get a pension started back up when he had two strokes and went blind.   I could not succeed.
The military funeral was beautiful but the honor of his service was more than deserved.  Not because it was Daddy but because he EARNED it.  The people who flocked around the casket in 300.00 attired with flowers adorned in the funeral home did not really know my Daddy.   Just like my husband's family does not know him.  

I can think of times my Daddy in later years would be taking care of the grandkids( his pride) when people mocked him for opening his home to feed or house some of the kids.  I remember he only had a 10th grade education before service and how he never talked until the end about his horror in the military.  I remember he sometimes would wear his clothes inside out before me or my family got there to straighten them out.  We would see him making gravy and ho cake.  That is a great big biscuit.   I remember going down to the little house next to the mission and Cheri, who was murdered later on in another state bringing little trinkets home for Daddy.  I remember Meals on wheels stopping by before we moved Daddy in with us and him getting a hot meal that he did not have to prepare.  I remember one of my sisters cleaning his house on Saturday and
My husband and me stopping by daily to check on him.  I remember my son working for peanuts and paying the cable bill and them getting the car payment up, usually a 15 year old gas guzzler and he would offer to help pay my son off old, almost ancient speeding tickets.  I remember the kids playing in a makeshift swing set and jumping on the trampoline.  I remember Daddy not having all his rent money and us making up for it more than once.  I remember as his memory failed the bad check pick up.    What were the bad checks about?  Well, lights, or groceries or some foolishness such as this.   It was never for some extravagant thing like a business meeting with a client to discuss a multi figure account.  It was never about an expensive vase or imported painting.   His pleasures were always spent on a handmade sandbox, a few boards to feel and build  a porch with guidance from one of the kids.  How about a trellis for that beautiful rosebush he was about to plant.  He did not care if he had air conditioning but it was important that the little ones not get too hot.  After all two were special needs.   They were all his special needs...They were all special and they all needed.  He wore his best old jeans and worn shirt to make sure those needs were met with our limited help as well.  Social Security, and a big portfolio retirement of 36.00 a month is rough.  He never complained unless he wanted something for the kids.   My husband, being cut from his cloth, even though it was my Dad, would make sure we provided a much as possible and always shared our meals when Daddy let us.  I still search my mind to wonder if we could have done more.  I guess that is why we moved him in with us.  We wanted him with us all the time until the Alzheimers got so bad.
We could not properly give him the care he needed.  Not the medical care.

The siblings with their big Cadillac and fancy homes never found time to do more than call once in a while.  He had a few that would drop by and visit but never ask if he needed anything.  Those who were in a position to never offered him as much as DK does every single day for strangers.   Most of my real friends and family are right here at Daily Kos.  They are real.  They are compassionate and they are not a bunch of phonies.   Thanks Markos for birthin this community of non Kabuki players.

  In thinking about it, it is almost beyond comprehension.    He was always just happy to see them.   The people at the funeral all made a fuss and oohed and ahhed at the beautiful flowers that he would have fussed over because money was something he never had and wouldn't want anyone to waste it on a sendoff.  He could have used that flower money when he was alive.  I looked around at faces that I had not seen in 40 years and thought, " Why are you people here?"   Where were you when he was worried about his rent, orgetting by on one meal or till my sisters or me could get there.  Where were you folks when he fell or was in the hospital?   Where were you people when he sat and listened to his tapes and he was the Shepard over a flock in the church.  Where were you people?  Who are you people?

I turn my attention to my husband who has good days and bad days.   Where are his siblings on veterans day?  Where were they when he came up missing and I had to turn to the kindness of strangers?   Where were the nieces and nephews on his dark days of pain?   Who are you people?  When he spends hours making recordings of his family that he had enough foresight to preserve their memories and share with them at his time and expense..where are the thank you's and where are the visits?  Where are the invitations to visit?  Where are you?

I really do not know who all these people are but I can tell you where they are.  They show up at funerals and at reunions and speak of people they never took time to know or help or hug.   They will show up some years later at another reunion or funeral, whichever comes first and say the same empty things, These people are the people who live for self and spend for self.  All for me and none for thee.  These are the people who forgot their raisings.  With all their riches, these are very poor people.  At the end of the day, what can you say?  This is how the majority of Americans treat their veterans and this, sadly is how most treat their own blood.   I will honestly say my Dad was always there, not just for his children but for his brothers,sisters, cousins, and entire family.  In the middle of the night he would go to them if they called.   He called.  He visited.. He was the eldest.  He was there before he became frail.  How appropriate that the day he died, he visited with an old cowboy and they sang " Cool Water".   He had searched for years for a taste of cool water, metaphorically.

 My husband gave so much to his country and never got to make the fortunes , just like my Daddy but he has the love of his wife and a few who take time to stop by the house.  All and all, just like Daddy, he has the people he dwells with, and the people he was raised with are now living in a different world with different priorities and they are all wrong.  I speak truth.  I won't apologize for the truth.   I heard somewhere, it will set you free.  My Dad died  a very rich man in life and love.  My husband is working on that fortune as well.   I pity the foolish who don't have a clue how rich these men are.

Fri May 03, 2013 at 5:29 AM PT: Thank you for the spotlight.  Today...Jack and I have been married 23 years ..Two away from the Silver one.

Originally posted to Vetwife on Thu May 02, 2013 at 08:38 AM PDT.

Also republished by Community Spotlight.

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