The Real Web
Posted by hyperpat on April 20, 2007
My brother, who normally resides in South Carolina, has been visiting here for the last four days, courtesy of a seminar/work assignment that his wife had to do in southern California. As with the large separation we don’t get to have really extended conversations too often, these last few days have been pretty much filled with just such, on anything from family history to world politics. Which is great. It also gave my eldest son a chance to meet his uncle, which had never happened previously (which says a lot about how frequently we’ve managed to get together).
But the older I get, the more I value such family things. Back when I was a stripling and serving in the Air Force, it didn’t bother me that I was neither talking to nor visiting my father, as that relationship was very strained. But when I did finally re-contact my family, and found out that my father had died in the interim, it was a pretty large blow. There are many times today when I wish I’d been able to talk more to my father, and learn what he’d done and what he felt was important, when I was old enough to really grasp such things. Too much of my father’s life is a black hole, and that leaves something of a hole in my own life.
I suppose you can never really know everything about someone else. But life is a web of interconnections and happenstances, and when the web has gaping holes in it, it is less secure, less complete. A hermit’s life is hardly worth living.