As I age, I am losing the older generation of family members at an ever increasing pace. Growing up, I was taught that this generation had it all together, almost to the point of infallibility. I was taught to respect my elders, to not question, and to obey without a second thought.
As this generation passes, closet doors are opening and skeletons are falling out. Not just any skeletons, but those that shake the very foundation of what you thought you knew and believed to be true. The kind of skeletons that leave destruction and pain in their wake. The kind of skeletons that negate that on which you've based a large portion of your life.
Part of it, I believe, is generational. These are a generation who was taught that private matters are never to be discussed. Today, we are much more free and open about our lives. Then...anything that might be considered to not fit the image was hidden away in a deep, dark place. But every closet door eventually opens.
While myself and other family members deal with the latest fallout, we realize that our child-like belief in our elders was an innocent tradition of days gone by. Now it is up to us to reconcile what we had always known with what really is. It's a difficult, emotionally devastating task. Without a doubt, this is one of the least enviable aspects of this empty nest.