After spending a few days visiting family and meeting my newborn nephew in Pennsylvania, I wish I could tell you that the trip was fantastic and everything went swimmingly, but unfortunately, I can't.
The day my dad and I left for PA was the day that my sister in law and my nephew were supposed to be discharged from the hospital. My brother and sister in law texted me that morning to tell me that my sister in law and the baby both had fevers and that they were not going to be discharged that day. My sister in law was discharged the next day, but my nephew is only now getting discharged today. It took a few days for his fever to subside and he needed a transfusion to get his blood platelet count back up. The poor little guy was in the NICU the whole time my dad and I were visiting and we weren't allowed to hold him because he had an IV in his umbilical cord. So, I didn't get any quality time with the baby, but I was still very happy to be able to see him. I was able to spend quality time with my sister in law, helping her around the house, and I did get to see my grandmother when my brother and I went and had lunch with her one afternoon.
You may have noticed the omission of one key player in my family: my mother. And this omission is for good reason: I didn't see or hear from her once while I was in town. As bad as that is, she did my brother even worse: after saying she might stop by the hospital the day his son was born, she did eventually show up and barely talked to my sister in law or her family, held the baby without looking at him, and hasn't bothered to talk to my brother since. She hasn't expressed any concern about the baby's health or made any indication that she wants to see him again. My mother has reached a new low.
While my brother and I were driving to my grandmother's the afternoon we visited her, my brother told me some more disturbing information. He has tried multiple times to talk to our mother about her hoarding and to help her. She has consistently turned him down, avoided him, shut down, and lied to him. He told me that he asked her if she was hoarding now and she answered no, even though she has brought her hoarding to the bedroom that she is staying in at my grandmother's and her car is in an awful cluttered state that is visible to anyone that walks past. He asked her if she ever hoarded and she answered no.
No?! No?! How dare she outright lie to my brother's face. I am a witness to the decade of complete filth that we lived in and she told him no! She can't even face the music and admit that she's a hoarder, not even to her own son who knows the truth about her. Her adamant denial trivializes all of the pain that I dealt with during that decade and all of the subsequent issues that I have had dealing with the reality of the situation. Her lying means that my struggle means nothing to her. Nothing. There is no way in hell I can have a relationship with someone that endangered me for a decade and cannot even admit that it happened. No, ma'am.
My brother warned her that if she doesn't clean up her act (literally), she will be losing the last person who knows about her problems and who cares about her. She lost her marriage and her only daughter because of her hoarding and now she's losing her only beloved son. She will become a sinking stone. He hoped that these threats would motivate her to reach out to her family and reconnect with us. All we've gotten is silence.