goodbye uncle

This weekend my uncle Louie (my father's brother) died at age 77. He was just about to take a shower when he had a massive heart attack. Apparently he was getting ready so he could see a chiropractor. I didn't even enough he was seeing one. I'm seriously out of the loop with family back in Merced. The last I heard he was still getting chemo treatments which my dad was taking him to. But when my dad called again on Monday to give me details on the funeral he filled me in on some things, like that one of my uncle's sons, Arthur, was living with him to take care of him. I hadn't known that. As far as I knew he'd been alone since my aunt Connie died a few years ago (I posted about that when it happened). He got depressed for a while but then got back into the American Legion and VFW activities like he used to. My father hinted at some family drama going on now with people arguing over stupid stuff which makes me sort of glad I won't be going to the funeral. I 'll visit his grave and make my respects then next time I'm in Merced (whenever that is.)

I'm feeling that I should feel more sad about his death than I am but I think I'm choosing to think only happy or funny stuff. Like when my sis and I were kids and my dad would take us to our uncle's lot (he sold used cars) we'd park ourselves in the office on these leather chairs and raid the mints and Juicy Fruit gum that was always on hand. Or remembering the ever-present wine somewhere close by, heck, his eyes always seemed bloodshot to me but I found that amusing not sad. Remembering him chuckle when I accidentally touched the electric fence around the pens for the horses and cows.

I worry about my dad. Of the seven children, my father being the youngest, only three are left. Two had died before I was born, aunt Dora and uncle Gilbert (where I got my middle name.) Two have died now in recent years, uncle Louie and aunt Lupe. The remaining, aunts Matilda and Josie**, have had health problems of their own though I hear those reports may have been exaggerated in typical family-style drama. But still, with me living 300 miles away and my sister 2000+ miles away I worry about him worrying over us, and, him worry about us worrying over him. I should call him more often or at least not just on the holidays but he and I never really have had a close relationship. We get on the phone and just say a few things, then pass the phone on to someone else. Plus, I've always felt like a disappointment to him both of where I'm at career-wise (or rather where I'm not) and about being gay and not giving him grandkids. *sigh*

** Not the one here in town. Both my dad and mom have sisters named Josie.
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N-E-V-E-R feel disappointed about the way you conduct your life in the eyes of your Mom and Dad. You are who you are or else you would of changed a long time ago.
I can sympathize with the worrying, my dad's the youngest sib and the only one of even his first cousins still living. He feels like a fossil(his words!), and he had a breakdown the day after we spread his sister's ashes last year. He's watched my health deteriorate in the last couple of years, and I think that has been harder on him than me. Yes, my feet hurt constantly and the doc's predictions that I'd be in a wheelchair by 45-50 are suddenly starkly in my future, but damn it, I've already packed in more living than some 70 year olds. It's just time to change gears.
Don't worry about providing him more grandkids, that's what us straight sibs are for! ;-) (Now theoretically, little sis could provide some with artificial insemination, but I really don't think that's gonna happen!)
Just love him, and make sure he knows that you do, it's all a father can ask. (Since I am one, I can actually say that with a little bit of authority!)