adult relationships.

20 Mar
My younger-by-a-year-and-a-half brother stopped over tonight.   With his girlfriend.  [Yes.  You heard that right – he has a girlfriend.  Here’s hoping I don’t jinx it … but he seemed really happy about it too.  Exciting.]  It’s funny.  Really, it’s just humorous to me to think about how my siblings and I have grown up and now have these adult brother-sister relationships.
I grew up on the farm, having mudball fights, shooting bb guns with my younger and older [a year and a half on either side of me – they have the same birthday] brothers, and playing baseball with lots of ghost runners.  I always got along with Ben; never with Matt.  [Sometimes that remains the truth.  But there are times when it’s not; we’re growing up slowly.]
Then there is Emma, nine years younger than I.  I was the live-in babysitter; I loved watching her and dressing her up.  I remember carrying her around in clothesbaskets and being angry that one time she got a hold of a box of kleenex and spread them ALL over the living room floor.  Now she’s 18, preparing to graduate from high school and go off to college.  We exchange scarves and books, and we’re planning a sister trip to Seattle in the month of June [hoping it works out to celebrate both of our graduations].
So my brother stops over.  This is a week after he called me to see if I wanted to have coffee.  I never thought such an invitation would pass through the lips of my bike-riding, lettuce-with-mustard eating brother.  He was in the Cities, visiting formerly mentioned girlfriend, and wondered if we could get together for coffee before they took off for a camping trip to Arkansas for her spring break from school.  [Because everyone thinks of Arkansas when they think of spring break, right?]
I think tonight, as Ben stopped over to my apartment, I got a glimpse of what it might be like someday when we visit one another in each other’s homes for holiday, birthdays, or whatnots.  This is how it went – Ben walked in.  He walked nearly immediately to the stove, on which sat the tuna noodle/green bean/broccoli concoction I had thrown together for dinner.  [Mind you, it’s after 8pm at this point.  Late dinner.]  “Oh, yeah, what’s this?”  I explain.  “Well that sounds good.”  [pause]  I asked if he wanted some.  “Oh, sure, that’d be good.”  Ben helps himself to the hotdish.  Then to something to drink.  Then to the candy in the canisters on the counter.
I simply acknowledge and not complain this comfort level.  I think it’s humorous … and good.  [It reminds me of cousins, Brent and Mike, who would walk into our farmhouse and straight to the fridge.  They lived in our house as much as we did.]  Perhaps it won’t ever really matter that it’s not the farmhouse we grew up in, or the house on the hill our family built and in which we currently reside.  A family member’s house is a home for each of us.  
It’s hard to tell where those homes might eventually settle.  Matt’s in Colorado and Ben has upcoming plane tickets to Alaska to search the possible job market outside of the continental forty-eight.  Emma’s future is yet unknown, knowing only that next year Carroll University will be the place she resides.  I’ll be somewheres in southeastern Minnesota.  I think it’s kinda fun to dream about where life will take us all, and where we’ll settle down to open our homes to each other in the future.  Now I know to have a hotdish of some odd kind waiting when Ben stops by.  And old Starburst for him to chew.  [He’s pretty easy to please.]
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