I didn’t punch my brother today even though I usually want to — 21/100

It’s Friday. I’m driving on the freeway, one of my favorite places to be (depending on the time of day lol). My brother, one of my favorite human beings, is in the passenger seat. We are heading home from a good therapy session. Windows are down and the sun kisses my left arm resting on the window frame. My hair flies wild in a not very sexy way. Music streams from the speakers, something chill.

Jed is sprawled in his seat, playing a game on his phone. I almost want to roll my eyes and be annoyed but I don’t. I can’t. The moment is too perfect.It would have been so easy to call him out on it — send him on a guilt trip for being distant when we rarely get time to spend together. It’d take such little energy to do what I’m superbly good at — be the bossy older sister. Such little is required for me to feel neglected, not treated with respect, blah blah blah.

Personally, I want to maximize the time I have with not just him, but everyone. I want to be fully present and enjoy the conversation, the presence. I stay away from my phone, unless it’s something urgent.

But this fool is over here acting like I’m a chauffeur, battling virtual enemies and building a virtual kingdom. Or something like that.

I watch myself and realize, this is okay. I could put him on blast. I could express my desire to really spend time with him. I could guilt and annoy him enough to make him put his phone away. I could make him more aware of his selfishness, push him to converse with me, because any relationship is a two-way street and he’s failing on his end.

But why?

That wouldn’t really be the solution I’m looking for. It’s not like he’ll put it away so very gladly and proceed to engage me in conversation about life and God and friends and future and relationships and ideas. I’ve come to find — it doesn’t work like that haha.

I realized I would rather invest in him feeling comfortable with me. I would rather he felt he could just be. Perhaps he’ll realize the time we have together isn’t to be taken for granted — someday. But even that took a while for me to understand. Perhaps he’ll understand that his desire to participate is greater than anything I could ever ask for. I wasn’t going to rob him of the capacity to want to talk to me, of the opportunity to connect. Even if it’s not clear to him now, and maybe it’ll never be realized, I think letting him be him is the best thing I could do for him.

I’m not sure that means I’ll stop pushing him to try different things, step out of his comfort zone, and stop being effing annoying sometimes, but there are moments for everything. And it’s all about wisdom to discern which moment is which.

So I sat there, in one of my favorite places with one of my favorite people. And I enjoyed it. I enjoyed it for myself. I enjoyed being free of my expectation of him. I enjoyed letting him be him. Because I’ve done all I can to be the best person I can be for him, whether he’s aware of it or not. That’s not the point.

My peace is separate.


Originally published at gracejyk.com on May 19, 2017.

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