At Lake Balboa Park today I read through family letters, documents, notes, and the like, from my childhood, all part of a three-ring binder my sister Lily and I gathered together. The park was slightly chilly so I wore my purple Snuggie.
Some of the letters made me cry, like the ones indicating how much my mother’s mother tried to help our family over the years when it was so difficult to know we, her grandchildren, suffered while my mom looked down on grandma as a lowly systemite, yet begged her for more money for our “missionary work.” Some letters made me laugh though like my grandfather in essence writing to my mother, “That’s lovely you just had another child, but remember, overpopulation.”
That’s part of the pain and beauty of life though. We each get to make our own decisions. Sometimes they hurt us, sometimes they hurt the planet, sometimes they hurt the generations to come, like the Family children who grew up and committed suicide.
My 15 siblings and myself lived in a shit version of polygamy, and are all still alive, thankfully. Currently, I happen to be in a supportive and monogamous marriage, and do my best to be content each day as I continue to tell our story. Or at least my story.