She tells me that Thanksgiving is being held at my perfect sister's house this year. You know, the middle child, alcoholic, bi-polar (mostly manic but crashes hard every time), three times married, uber controlling child. IOW, Mommy and Daddy's favorite. Let me preface this by saying that in a perfect world, my husband would have stepped up a long time ago to call my parents up and ask them what the heck they thought that they were doing not inviting us to family functions. In a perfect world L would have told them "No, if my mom's not invited, I'm not coming." In a perfect world, my mom (who claims to just want me back in the family fold) would say "She's my daughter and I'm inviting her for Christmas" or "She's my daughter and if she's not invited I'm not coming." But the world's not perfect. Instead there is "We don't invite her because we know she doesn't want to come." Which is something I have never said. So, and please be aware that under these circumstances, I am actually very happy with the results of my conversation with L regarding the holidays. She called last evening, and asked me what I wanted her to do. I told her I didn't really want her to do anything, it was just something I was pointing out - if I'm not good enough to invite to Thanksgiving where everyone is on their best behavior and we could pretend to be nice for an hour or so, an invitation to the large impersonal drunken brawl of an Irish family reunion that was also sent to the family convicted murderer and the family child molester doesn't seem like much of an invite. (I didn't give her the picturesque descriptions. She already knows.) She asked if I wanted her to ask if I could come. I told her that I wanted her to want to ask that I could come, but being as it is at my (unemployed homebody) sister's (who had a particularly large role in the 'big blowup') and that we already have plans and probably couldn't stay, and that this was not my intent in mentioning it to her in the first place, it should probably be best left to another time. L insisted that she wanted to work this out, so she would call Grandma. Huh? L says she doesn't have my sister's number, blah blah blah. Fine. But everyone needs to understand that if we come, it will only be for a short time as we already have plans. So, L calls grandma, who tells her that it would be best if grandma calls S to ask. L calls me right back to tell me that either Grandma or S will get right back to her and someone will call me. She tells me that she told grandma that she thought it would go a long way towards healing the family rift if I were invited. Hmmm, you'd think that might be something a 79 year old was already aware of. (Could it be that they don't want to heal the rift?) Three hours later, at dinner, I am getting the warm-all-over feeling that S is probably into her third bottle of wine by now, crying uncontrollably, because she just can't figure out how to say "no" and still come out of this looking good. No one ever called. I feel a little bad for L. Like I said earlier, I would be happier if she refused to go on principle, but she's not that grown up yet. But, I am sure that she is uncomfortable (she should be) that they have either said "no", or she's waiting for them to call her back. Maybe she'll have principles next time. Even if my sister were out of the house, my mom would have eventually called to tell L that we shouldn't wait and worry. (As if!) I tell you, I am doing a great big happy dance! It's been nine years that I have been left out of holidays, weddings, funerals, child births, etc., on the BS story that I don't want to go. Well, I guess we put that to rest, didn't we? I don't have to feel bad about holidays anymore. I called their bluff and they folded. And me and the hippy friends still get to sit around on Thanksgiving and sing and eat and drink. Sounds like one of the best Thanksgivings in a long time.