My mom arrived home around 9pm. I figured I'd be happier to see her, I wasn't.  Over the weekend I became a bit of depression-cliché, with the exception of showering and using the bathroom, I laid in bed all day, every single day, including most of Monday until mom came home. I would suddenly envision myself as depressed characters in movies, who only stayed in bed, and the plot generally would imply they were difficult because of this, or a burden on their relationships. Still, this didn't motivate me todo anything different. Low mood, low energy would be an understatement.

When my mom first arrived home I remained in bed, she announced her arrival, and I pretended not to hear, or rather, I simply didn't acknowledge it. I remained laying in bed, starring out the window with my back facing the door. She finally entered my room and demanded a hug, I got up, faked a smile and gave her a hug. I then followed her to the living room where she would fill me in on the amazing, wondering, great time she had. She first told be about the seven hour road trip, that included lots of potty breaks, and lunch meat sandwiches, the revolving sitting arrangements, and all the fun they were having on the way up.

Things only got better once they made it to our family's house up in North Carolina, apparently this was a much bigger family gathering than I had been lead to believe originally. Multiple cars were taken up, few relatives were absent. So a large scale of our family was making this massive commute. She told me about all the familiar faces, how she often stayed up until 5 am in morning with relatives playing games! She said the food was excellent and there was a large variety, almost like a buffet. She raved about some banana desert dish. They even hired a DJ  that playEd really good music.

I asked her if anyone had asked about my brothers, it was a pathetic bait question, the goal was for it to eventually bring me into the equation. Without hesitation she replied  "oh you know they did", she's started name dropping and went on and on about how people asked about them. Then it ended. My bait failed, but how? I had no choice, I had to be direct. So I just asked, hey did anyone ask about me. Awkward dead silence, she was searching for an answer she knew she didn't have. I answered for her, I get it. She tried to save face a bit by saying this one person did, but the damage was done, the truth was already revealed. I stockpiled emotions I was feeling since the start of the conversation, and continued, as mother carried on and concluded with her weekends festivities. Then I exited to my chamber

Naturally a breakdown ensued, those damned brothers of mine. What crazy voodoo spell had they casted on this family! Why did I have to be different? If I had followed the path those two laid out for me I'd be just like them. Sure I'd be in jail from time to time, maybe even right now. I might have several kids out of wedlock, and have an under developed sense of responsibility. My morals might be completely backwards, but I'd occasionally have a love life, kids who loved me in spite of my many, many, many, many, many, many, many, many, many, many, many, many flaws, social acceptance, I'd be cool and remembered. I still don't understand why my brothers are so popular with the family, maybe despite all of their bad qualities they still have better, more entertaining,  and relatable  personalities than mine.

I think my life would be more valued if I were dead.


  1. Sounds like your brothers are known for their drama. It's nice to be acknowledged, but for the wrong reasons....??? You matter a great deal whether those relatives of yours asked about you or not. People love hearing about other people's drama and that's so sad. I wish your mom would have boasted about your weight loss accomplishments, as you are highly inspirational!

    1. Thanks so much Melissa. Sadly all her storytelling did was just reinforce the notion that I won't be important until the weight is gone. Apparently even losing the weight isn't a big deal.

  2. Are your brothers much older than you Brandon? I am wondering if your relatives remember them much better or maybe just haven't spent as much time with you.

  3. People value stories. Your brothers make drama, and that's sells well at gatherings. When you lose a ton of weight, yeah, you'll be on the story list, but is that really what you want? To only be known for your weight? These are people looking for entertainment, they are NOT validation for you in any way.

    Family are just people you happen to be related to. It doesn't make them care about you. It doesn't make them have your best interests at heart. They're just people. I have a somewhat large family (extended family, anyway) that I don't have any connection to. My husband has an even bigger extended family, and we have NO connection to them.

    Real family are the people you love and choose to keep close to you. The people you adopt into your world. THOSE people are your family. Everyone else is just window dressing and circumstance.

    That being said, the only person you are in competition with is yourself. You keep looking for validation from outside sources. That's never going to happen. You have to chase what matters to you, really matters. What's going to change your life for the better. That may or may not make a great story for a bunch of sad people just looking to gossip, but again, that doesn't matter. YOU are the one living your life. Make it worth it.


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