When you have some anger, hurt, pain, abandonment, and hatred tied to your father, how do you or would you expect for your children not to have those same affections towards you? When all you’ve expressed to them are those emotions. You’ve taught them to love you as you love your father, where and why should there be an exception?
These are the questions I asked myself the weekend leading into April Fools Day…
I asked myself these questions because I so desperately wanted to express those thoughts and feelings to my father, OUR father… Shaking My Damn Head….
This was the first time in history that all of my father’s known children graced his presence at once. You would imagine and think that this would be a glorious moment not just for him but his children as well. It turned out to be what my sister labeled a “shit show.” Showing favoritism, and abandonment in its truest form. I never expected my father would show his true colors in such a degrading way. I could go on and on about how not just I was hurt by him this weekend. But how all of us leading down to his grandchildren were also hurt by this weekend. Exactly how much good will that do? More than likely NONE, absolutely positively NONE.
So let me allow this to dwindle into the learning and growing parts of this trip. My intentions were to make peace and in making peace that entailed me making peace in the way I wanted it to be not the way it was intended for me to find my own peace with not just my father, but my children’s father. That peace was necessary because my children needed to see and know that regardless to the bullshit, their parents could get along and have a good time for their sake, forget our sake. Well to say the least their father and I did have peace and I hit some of his buttons as the peace was being made. It was nice to be around him and us not argue and fight. To not be worried if he would knock the hell out of me, (or as I use to worry more about in my past with him,) our children seeing him abuse me and talk to me in demeaning ways and being so flippancy with his choice of words. I was happy that things went well in that relationship, I enjoyed seeing my children smile from that. Having a feeling of security within their parents and our behavior/respect towards each other. One of the greatest foundations to bestart building.
Now my father I cannot say the same about him. There were things that were said and things that were done that I may never ever be able to help my children heal from. I’m okay with them healing on their own at their own pace as long as they heal. The moral of this aspect is I realized as the comments and statements were made that my father still held hatred and hurt. There was still pain, and disappointment in his heart for his father, just like us. His very own three children had in their hearts for him. He was angry with him for all the wrong things his father did. Unable to appreciate the small moments his father was there for him. I realized that as much as my father pretended to forget things and act as though he had grown past those things, he truly had not. He missed his mother but was too hurt to acknowledge that he wished he knew more about her and had a better bond with her. I kind of got the feeling that he wished his mother was around to save him from the things he “says” his father did to him. What’s so obvious about all of this is knowing that my grandfather spoke of his father mistreating and abusing him. With the wisdom of our elders, you would think he would say and do the opposite to his own children. His own 11-18 children. It’s intriguing yet sad how the things we say and do, our behaviors seem to trickle down genetically. We begin to wonder where the act of foolishness comes from but we never turn in. We never turn in to look to self and accept that it is within our being, and our DNA. The blow that hit me the most is my father could not comprehend that he too was doing the same things his father had done to him and his grandfather had done to his father. Genetically we all were each other, we all were one ….
I was blocking accepting that I would become this very same person inside of myself. Holding back tears, pain, and so much more.
Fighting the moments of me wanting to just lash out with anger, I held it all inside of me to not become that person inside of me.
My father is not the healthiest man in the world nor is he the sickest man in the world. I’m just willing to take in that one day he will not be here. I do not want my last days living as an adult like himself, to be spent the way he is spending his. Looking at a picture of his father (that he claims he does not want in his house) and still having no love for the man who helped give him life. I do not want to be living in the turmoil of hurt. Wishing I had a better bond with my parents on any level, when they are right here right now. I may not be able to get the relationship and bond that I want, but I am able to get something from them. What I am able to get, give, and receive is time, forgiveness, moments (no matter how big or small) of happiness, and just actually “knowing” my parents for who they are and what they represented. Their gift to their loved ones, life, and the world we live in.
I walked away with some bumps and bruises, and I’ll take those any day over scars and wounds that need more than just time to heal.
I wanted to add “Maya Angelou’s Poem: Mourning Grace” just to shed some light on the things we blame others for, they are truly a part of us. If it weren’t a part of who we are then how are we able to identify it in others? How can we ask something of our children we are not willing to give our parents? Reflection is such an important niche to have. To me it is one of the key things that can help us pick up on what we need to address within self before we think about turning a finger on someone else.
Mourning Grace By: Maya Angelou
If today I follow death,
go down it’s trackless wastes,
salt my tongue on hardened tears
for my precious dear time’s waste
along that promised cave in a headlong
to mourn for
“Love with grace while they are alive and you can love them with peace when they are gone.”