In Castaway Bottles: Fallout

Riselle Nicolas

[To read PART ONE of this letter, see my post from last week.]


Dear Grandpa,

I want to believe you made that decision because you were just angry. Maybe you just blew up and said whatever came into your mind. Maybe you regret your actions, but were too stubborn to retract them. Who knows? Nonetheless, your decision to sell our home was too extreme. Legally, you have every right to do so, but you weren’t just selling off some stranger’s home. It was our home too. Your home. Your daughter’s home. Your granddaughter’s home. You didn’t see all the times my parents worked tirelessly to maintain the house to ensure it didn’t fall down on us.

To this day, I’m sure you don’t know what went on behind the scenes. I’ve held onto too many memories of hearing my mom cry. I was really scared for her health. I couldn’t begin to imagine the thoughts that raced through her head and kept her awake at night. Everyday, I saw her become consumed by those thoughts. I felt a change in her behavior. She lost her appetite, barely slept and did nothing but try to find “another way” out.  One time, she just started crying uncontrollably. Every time she had a call with you or her sisters, it pushed her to the point of insanity with the stress and frustration that kept piling up.

I’ve heard those conversations you’ve had with my mom where she kept pleading for you to change your mind. Even after apologizing a million times, you still wouldn’t budge. My mom was hysterical with fear about how we were going to end up. She frantically searched everywhere for another place for us to move. It was too expensive to keep living in the area so she looked farther out, which meant different schools, neighbors, people, and surroundings. But even if we managed to find another house, there was no way we could patch things up. My mother told me that if we moved away, for everyone’s sake, we would have to cut your side of the family off for good. Although it sounds like it was out of anger, I knew she said that because she was heartbroken.

But despite everything, she was still torn between what was best for us as a family and what needed to be done to continue a relationship with you, her parents. Of course she loved you and grandma immensely, but that was why the weight she carried was greater than my dad and I’s.

I’ve always knew that if it wasn’t for me, my parents wouldn’t have fought so hard to keep this place. I knew it was selfish, but I did not want to leave the house I grew up in. I had lived in that house since I was born, and I intend to keep living there until I moved out. Selling this house would throw away the main source of all the memories I’d ever known.

But then suddenly, you introduced another option. When I heard there was an alternate way instead of selling the house, I mistakenly thought it might end the whole ordeal. But it was quite the opposite. In fact, it only fueled more chaos.