Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Sibling Chronicles: Chapter Six

I'm pretty sure that when I started my sibling chronicles, some of my friends AND family thought I had miscounted. Growing up, I lived with George & Mom and my siblings, Tiffany and Christopher. Every other weekend I visited my Dad and Karen's house and got to see Kim, Jill, Byron, Sarah, Betsy, Ben and Andy. Well, honestly when I was visiting every other weekend, some of these siblings weren't born yet, but still, it all still adds up to 9 siblings.

So where is the elusive 10th sibling coming from? The mystery is answered here. On September 19, 1970 George Fleming and Judy Ashley Godsey got married. My Mom brought to the marriage me and my sister Tiff. George brought with him, drum roll please, a son from his first marriage: Peter Todd Fleming. So that's it.
My Mom and George look really happy to be married and combining families. Peter and I look like we have just been sentenced to prison. Hmmm, there was some tension early on trying to get to know a new sibling... from both sides I am sure. I teased Peter, a lot, all the time. Peter was very easy to tease. He had not had a sibling prior to this, but I did have a sibling... a little teeny sibling that was too young to torture, so I took full advantage of my new, younger, but not that much younger, and very sturdy brother. I admit that I did this. I am not sure why, possibly trying to get the attention of my new Step-Dad, or maybe trying to reassure myself that this new sibling was not going to take my place in Mom's heart, I mean come on, how could he, look at what a wimp he was (in my 7 year old mind at least, I can assure you now, Peter is no wimp).
So, my new sibling Peter Todd Fleming, born August 14, 1964 allowed me to forever keep my "oldest child" status in both the Fleming and Godsey families. Gee, do you think I took advantage of this much. Anyway, this is my favorite picture of Peter and the one I always think of when I think of him, so I borrowed it from my Mom's wedding album for a little scan. Peter was naughty, always getting into some trouble or other, even without my help. He visited every other weekend, on the weekends when Tiff and I were home (i.e., not at our Dad's house). I remember Peter couldn't go on our first family vacation together because he had tried to run through his Mom's sliding glass door and had to get a bunch of stitches. I just could not understand this.
Peter and I were confirmed at the same time at Grace Memorial Episcopal Church in NE Portland. We both loved going to confirmation classes because every week the Reverend took the whole class to Farrell's for ice cream. I miss Farrell's.
Peter lived with us on Mt. Tabor for a short time during Middle School. When I was in 8th grade and Peter in 7th, we both attended Binnsmead Middle School in SE Portland. Not very many people knew we were siblings. I think we both wanted it that way. One time on the ride home, Peter tried to sit in the back of the bus (exclusively reserved for 8th graders) and a boy I had a crush on put gum in Peter's hair. I always felt really bad about that. I helped my Mom get it out of Peter's hair when we got home and that is where I learned that oil "helps" get gum out of things... my Mom used Peanut Butter, which I could not understand because it was so much messier than straight oil. I think we actually had to eventually cut the gum out of Peter's hair.

So, now that we are all grown up, we get along just fine. Peter has three great teenage boys, added to my two teenage boys, gives George and my Mom five teenage grandsons. I know they adore their herd of grandsons, but one little granddaughter would have been nice... Chris? If you are out there, you are the only one left to take care of this... no pressure or anything... just sayin'....

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