On Monday evening we had a family meeting. And for once, by some miracle, all of my offspring managed to show up. Later, my brother asked me if I manage to keep all the grandkids straight, and I have to admit “usually”… sometimes I do have to pause for a minute, to get the right name.
Anyway, this annual Chanukkah party has a two-fold purpose:
One, as would be expected, is for all the siblings to get together, and have some fun. But the second reason is to think about Ricki’s future. I don’t want that after I die, that Ricki should fall as a “burden” on one of her siblings. She has, thank G-d, enough siblings that looking out for her best interests can be done by several people. I want that the siblings should be used to checking:
-What does Ricki want?
-What are her dreams?
-Can we help her obtain these dreams?
-Can we help her be more independent?
-Does Ricki get along with those around her? If not, can anything be done?
-Is anyone abusing or using her?
-Does she have any health needs that she needs help with?
Etc., etc., etc.
Now usually, Ricki’s siblings have treated my insistence on this as a joke. Suddenly, this year it wasn’t. She is getting older. I am getting older. And they are, it seems, getting to be more aware that theirs is a responsibility that really does need to be carried--- and shared.