Oh, Brother.

Alright. This may be a long one.

I’ll start where Family Secrets left off.

Obviously the first thing I do when I’m told of the rumor that I have a brother is look him up on Facebook. What did we do before the internet?

It wasn’t hard to find him, I knew his first and last name and that his cousin was friends with my cousin.

I started to creep his pictures–I needed to see if he was my brother, and somehow thought that I would just know if I saw the right picture. 

And then I saw the picture. And at that moment I knew, I knew that he was my brother.  

 Charles

The resemblance is uncanny. This boy, whose photos I have just creeped on Facebook, who (at the time) may or may not have been my brother, looks quite like my cousin, Michael [see below].

Michael

I was so sure of our relation in that moment that I (internally) got quite angry when people would point out that a picture is not proof. 

I knew I couldn’t explain the feeling, so I kept my feelings in check and let my family and friends tell me that I shouldn’t ‘get my hopes up’.

Regardless, I messaged him. Nothing too weird, just a simple ‘Hey, this may seam weird, but I heard a rumour that Bruce Thompson (my dad) may be your dad too.’

He responded with ‘Yeah, I’ve heard that rumour, lol’.

From there we talked about the possibility of us being siblings, our feelings about it, and how to go about confirming it. Do you know how sketchy some DNA testing sites look? I never had a need for DNA testing so it was never something I’ve looked into before, but with a little research we set up an appointment for my dad and him to go in and get the test done.
We found out in October 2014 that we were officially siblings and I couldn’t have been happier. He’s a great guy, we’ve and our conversations have only gotten better. 

Although I only just got the chance to meet him this past July, and only got a couple of days to hang out (that’s a post for another day), I know that our relationship is only going to get better. 

Family Secrets.

Growing up, I was the oldest of three girls. My mother and father had me, and then almost four years later, my little sister Zoe. They later separated and my mother married Ed, my Step-dad. They had my youngest sister, who is ten years younger than me, Mackenzie.

I guess you could say on the outside my family looked like any other split-parent family. I had two of almost everything, split my weekends between my moms and my dad’s, and rotate holidays.

As I got older, I stopped seeing my dad on a strict schedule and spent more time at his house, just because.

My friends and I would take the GO Train out to his place (two towns over) and spend the weekend out there. I was during one of these weekends that my friend Brittany and I were talking to him about half-siblings.

A little backstory: Brittany had just found out her brother, who they were under the impression was her father’s son–was not. He was actually her half-brother.

It was during this conversation, in 2005 that my father jokingly said, “who knows, you may have a half-brother out there somewhere”.

Flash forward nine years, my sister, Zoe, just came home from a trip down east to our family property in New Brunswick. She comes to me and says, “I just found out that we may have a half-brother named Charles, who lives in New Brunswick”, she then told me that dad told her he had “heard of” the rumor that he may have a son back in 2001.

I don’t think I’ve ever been more upset with my father than I ever have been in my life. How could he of kept this from me, from us. We had gotten so close, yet I felt that he broke that down with this one secret.

M.I.A.

So, it’s been awhile since I’ve posted anything (personal or book review), and I wanted to give a bit of an explanation.
A lot of big things have happened for me over the past few months and I am working on writing those experiences out, but for now here is the short versions.

I was fired from my job–minor customer dispute nothing horrible on my part, but I was super stressed there, so, hey good riddance. [Beginning of April]

I left the country for the first time ever to go to Disney World with my son. Florida was amazing and we had a blast. [End of April/ Beginning of May]

My future brother in law was arrested. (No I won’t go into too much detail, but yep it sucks.) [Beginning of June]

I went to New Brunswick to meet my brother, whom I just found out about (and he’s the same age as me!), and see some family I haven’t seen in five years. [Middle of July]

All the while I’ve been struggling with severe anxiety that I’ve never really told anyone about, which all changed a couple of days ago when I saw a Psychologist for the first time.

I know I have a lot of work to do, mental illness doesn’t just go away after you tell someone (oh god, I wish) but I feel like a weight has been lifted–at least a little.

I went far too long not really realizing that my ‘issues’ were not something to be ashamed of and that I CAN get help for, and start to control them.

More to come.