Saturday, May 21, 2011

Margie

My favorite aunt was the black sheep of the family. Not that there was any reason particularly why that was the case. The only thing I knew was that maybe Margie had called CPS on my grandmother when my mom and her were teenagers.

Of course, the implication at the time was that Margie was just trying to make trouble for Grandma. Or maybe it was the belief that life wouldn't be any better away from her. Maybe just maybe it would be worse. Still it was Margie's fault that the powers that be looked at the family and we all knew what a big sin that was.

Yet, one little sentence about Margie's wrong doing was all I ever got. Loaded with all that innuendo. It never put me off. I loved Margie. She was bigger than life, beautiful, funny and she cared about me.

I didn't care for her family much. She had three boys. They were wild, destructive. One even torched a garage. Can't remember if it was the neighbor's or their own. Clearly they were a family in crisis.

I heard stories about her controlling husband. Possessive, jealous, with a bad temper yet wanting her to be in the limelight and then maybe beating her for it. But I was young. I didn't understand the implications of all these things. All I knew was the couple of times I remember staying with my aunt I felt special even if her bratty boys picked on me. Being seen in her eyes somehow made me important, at least to her.

I dont' know when Margie went away. Maybe after the kids were grown. I just know she was moved off and had no contact with the family. She had a problem with booze but then all of them did, only she was the one that got pointed out.

Margie got heavy, very heavy. Her beautiful model's body lost under layers and layers of fat. I remember her face was so distorted I hardly recognized her. It was her laugh that confirmed for me it really was my beloved Margie.

She would be ostracized for a while, years sometimes. Then she suddenly reappear and I'd be so glad to see her. I never knew what or why she was come and gone only that she was. Still I worshiped that woman. I wanted to be like her. I wanted to be beautiful and funny.

I didn't care that the family considered her to be the black sheep. She was a queen to me. Probably because she cared about me, or I thought she did. Who really knows with her disappearing like that for years at a time but it never changed my feelings about her.

I don't' even know what happened to Aunt Margie. All I know is I ended up like her in a way I hadn't figured. I ended up the black sheep of the family. The one who told secrets. The one ostracized. The one spoken about in illicit terms.

I'll bet my siblings refer to me in the same terms as Margie got. Nothing specific anyone could put a finger on. Heck, if you did that, it might be possible to find the truth. No, the implication of secret unthinkable things has so much more power to keep one pushed off in a corner and ignored. For the first time in my life I understand why I never knew what Margie did or said for sure but with all I've been through I can certainly imagine. Makes me love her even more. Guess Margie and I were kindred spirits. I just didn't get it at the time.

7 comments:

fernvalley01 said...

Sounds to me like you lived up to the very best parts of Margie,I am sure she would be proud. Also sounds like she had a pretty rocky life , bless her wherever she landed

63mago said...

Happy 4th of July to You.
Nobody knows exactly in what terms others think about oneself, how the outer image is created and how it works.
I wish you all the best.

63mago said...

Have no idea whether you still look here.
I just want to offer my best wishes for the New year: May it be good to YOu, and all the people who are important to You!

TinaM said...

Being true to what you know is right, is important. It sounds like that's something you both know and stand by.

Liz Elliot- Five Farewells said...

I loved what you wrote about your Aunt Margie. I found it very moving. I remember what it was like to love the black sheep that way, and to become the black sheep myself. My sister was who I loved the most in the world and she dropped out of our lives for years at a time when I was young. I had an aching love for her, and that love was about so many things. The love was too big to carry.

Thanks for the post. Please join me on facebook or visit my site if you would like an additional friend! :)

http://lizelliot.wordpress.com/

Liz Elliot, Author of Five Farewells

Liz Elliot- Five Farewells said...

I loved what you wrote about your Aunt Margie. I found it very moving. I remember what it was like to love the black sheep that way, and to become the black sheep myself. My sister was who I loved the most in the world and she dropped out of our lives for years at a time when I was young. I had an aching love for her, and that love was about so many things. The love was too big to carry.

Thanks for the post. Please join me on facebook or visit my site if you would like an additional friend! :)

http://lizelliot.wordpress.com/

Liz Elliot, Author of Five Farewells

Dawn Floyd said...

I love this story because parts of it remind me of my own family. You see, even though I'm not considered the black sheep, I was once someone's Aunt Margie. I may still be, but the thing is, I don't know. I moved about 8 hours away and haven't talked to my niece who I miss very much, so much that I dream about her sometimes. She didn't have her mom (the black sheep) growing up. Instead she lived with her grandparents. I was the one who took her on vacations and picked her up every other weekend to do fun things. We always had so much in common. But I knew there would come a day when she would start enjoying being with friends and boys more than me. I just didn't expect that she would completely shut me out. She seemed to really change, got into drugs some too, started struggling in college. I know that's somewhat typical of that age, but she's repeating some of the things her mom did and that's what scares me most. Not because I judge her but because I love her and I want her to be okay. We got into an argument just before I moved away a few months ago and we haven't spoken since.

I just hope your Aunt Margie knows how you felt, still feel about her. I think it would set her on top of the world to read this touching story of unconditional love.