Yesterday was Thanksgiving. It was also my uncle Brian's birthday. So ,when Fall comes around I think of him, especially at Thanksgiving even though the two days don't always coincide. I think of him as the days get colder and wetter. Since I've moved to a farm I never see him. Why so much thought to an absentee relative? Well, my uncle Brian is a homeless person.
I always found him different but I could easily discuss things with him. He's only 6 years older than myself. My Mother is one of 10 siblings and the oldest daughter. He lived with my Grandmother in Ottawa. My Grandmother passed away 19 years ago. That's when things went a little haywire. He had to live on his own. Did not keep jobs for long. What did not help is as a teenager he lost the sight in one eye just by being pushed into a telephone pole. Somehow, my Father brought him into the hospital he worked at, which was a military hospital. Perhaps under the guise that because my Grandfather had served years ago? Not quite sure how that came to be. So, essentially he also has a disability.
A bit of time later, a few more "incidents" and there you have a schizophrenic wandering the streets refusing any one's assistance because he is "fine". In 2011, my Aunt Brenda passed away. I wanted to let my uncle know that his sister, to whom he would sometimes visit unannounced had passed away. I had to call the union Mission and did locate him. He did not show up for the service but at least he knew. My cousin , the deceased's daughter had an issue with him showing up and yet she was very close to him in her early life.I don't understand how cold some people are but I let that go as she was grieving and may have not been thinking as she normally would.
So when I tuck into that pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving, it's with a bit of sadness but also a few good memories and the reminder that winter is coming. Be well Brian.