Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Birth and Death and Everything in Between

As some of you might have come to realize, writing posts for this blog is frequently a cathartic experience for me.  I use it to work through various emotions when I'm having stressful times, or I use it to alleviate boredom or because something specifically piques my interest and I become passionate about it.

Today is a cathartic day.  I'll state that up front as a warning in case you desire to move along to other things.

For the past 6 1/2 years, I've been coping off and on with the results of my father having a massive and debilitating stroke, rendering him completely disabled and with a total inability to care for himself and his own needs.  If you've read any of my earliest posts to this blog,  you'll also know that when the initial stroke happened, everything essentially got dumped in my lap to take care of. 

Earlier this year, on 1/16/2013, I found out that.. much to my surprise... dad had died.  I didn't get the phone call that I've been expecting for so many years. No, I found out that my only remaining parent was dead when I received a letter from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Division, Office of Body Donation, expressing their condolences on our loss and thanking us for dad being a willing body donor.... 10 days after the fact.  My brother - and our maternal grandmother (whom he lives with and sponges off of) - didn't consider it Their problem to inform me of our father's death.

 My older brother was (and remains) an utterly useless PoS who wants nothing to do with anything that even Remotely resembles .... (dun dun dun)... 


Which of course meant that he has spent the past several years avoiding any potential for me to rely upon him to help out with dad's care, making certain that dad was in a decent nursing facility, making certain that dad's bills got paid, being sure that any paperwork that needed to get done for anything got done on time and properly.  The only thing my brother has wanted in all this time was for me to cough up money out of dad's accounts, on demand, to pay His bills... screw the fact that dad's money was there for Dad's bills.  He's threatened me, he's tried once to kill me (thank the gods he's an absolutely incompetent nitwit, or I'd be taking the concept of Ghost Writing to a whole new level!) he's committed fraud several times, he's tried to set me up to go to jail for fraud several times, and he's caused so much financial grief that it ultimately led to losing the family home last summer and me nearly ending up in the hospital with a lupus flare from all the stress that brought about.

So today, much to my disgust, I was forced into the position of having to deal with my idiot brother one final time.  He's named as a joint beneficiary on one small life insurance policy, and due to company policy in such cases, I have to have him sign a copy of the claim form, so that they can send him his token amount directly.  Now the good part of this is that after he signs that form tomorrow, I won't ever have to deal with him again for as long as either of us is alive.  That's the ONLY thing he's listed as a beneficiary of, and he made it plain today while on the phone with me that (according to him) it's somehow All My Fault that there's not some huge amount of money waiting for him to claim it as should be his by right.

He feels like I somehow managed to "cheat him" out of what he considered "rightfully his" - "rightfully" in the sense that he figures since he was the oldest surviving offspring, and the only male offspring, that he should have gotten anything and everything (except the remaining bills) that happened to be there after dad stroked in the first place.  He's incredibly bitter about the loss of the family home - both because he now has zero chance of attempting to claim it as His inheritance, and because it can't be sold and him claim the lion's share of the money from the sale.

In all of this, he still manages to avoid accepting any responsibility.  He refuses to see that many of the financial problems - up to and including the loss of the family home - are a direct result of choices HE made, actions that HE instigated, and people that HE associated with.  He and his former girlfriend (dead 2 years ago due to a drug overdose - good riddance to bad rubbish) hid a lot of crucial and time sensitive paperwork from me during the first 6 or 7 months after dad's stroke.  They hid paperwork about property taxes that were due, which started the cycle of the taxes never getting caught up - which led to the loss of the house.  They hid paperwork about dad's long term disability insurance from me - which led to the loss of the insurance paying dad's nursing home bill - which led to me having to pay that bill out of dad's retirement funds (the inheritance that my brother is so bitter about the loss of) until there was nothing left.  He himself personally stole a few checks from dad during that time, to bolster his own squandered money spent on drugs and booze, with no thought then or now about what sort of problems that caused - because according to his reasoning, it was somehow Owed to him, because it was supposed to be His Inheritance anyway.

When I informed him that there are still bills coming in that are in dad's name... which, by the terms of the will, are supposed to be paid out of the insurance before either of us get anything that's left... he was quick to tell me that it wasn't his problem.  Dad's dead, they can eat the costs of whatever bills remained, because he has no intention of spending the insurance payoff that way.  Then he went on to tell me that the bills should be my problem anyway, since I was the Trustee of the family Trust - and the bills are the Trust's problem.  Which makes no sense when you think about the fact that in the past 7 years he's stated numerous times that he should "by right of being eldest and only male" get anything in the Trust.  By his own former logic... that he should get everything that remains of the trust... the bills ARE his problem, and his alone. He's changed his tune on that score drastically now that the only thing left of the Trust is a slew of bills that he wants nothing to do with.

The bright side to all this, as I said a moment ago, is that after tomorrow I'll never have to deal with him again for the rest of my life.  I can forget that he exists, and finish writing his worthless arse out of my universe.  I think I may celebrate after I have that signed paperwork back in  my hand. 

No doubt some of you are sitting there thinking "Wow, she really hates her few remaining relatives."  You'd be wrong if you think that I hate him OR our grandmother the Bat.  You see, the opposite of love isn't hate, it's indifference.  In order to hate someone, you have to give a flip about them.  I stopped caring about either of them sufficiently to hate them years ago.  I hate their Actions.  I detest his myopic self absorption and delusions.  I find him (and her) to be rather pitiable excuses for humanity, due to their entitlement attitudes and utter lack of self responsibility or accountability.  But I quit hating THEM.. the individuals... a few years ago, when I came to the realization that I just don't care enough one way or the other about them as people to invest the emotional energy in such a Personal set of feelings as Hatred.

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