Saturday, March 22, 2008

The Childhood of my Reality

I had a really good cry last night after I posted the Dear Daddy letter. I typed most of it with my eyes shut and tried not to go back and correct much more than typos. I noticed alot of run on sentences which I actually thought was good.....the thoughts were flowing very quickly. I feel like "my Dad" has died. And I suppose that was the entire point of the letter. Obviously, I don't know what will really happen when my bio-father dies but I have this feeling of peace right now that when he does die, I will have already grieved for what I never got from him. And it will be far less traumatic. I realize he is nothing but a shell, a figure of my past. A DNA donor. I don't have to try to reach out to him again because I accept that who he is, and who I want him to be, are two completely different people. I will continue to work on mourning that loss whenever I feel it come up.

The father of my reality is a sick, damaged, dark, depressed man. I hate remembering or admitting that we had some good times together but we did. I remember when our dog had 5 puppies, playing with him and the puppies. I can see him sitting on the ground with the puppies running and jumping all over him.
Times we had company over. He was a totally different man in front of other people. I wouldn't have minded that guy as my Dad. He was pretty damn charming.
The letter he wrote me on my 16th birthday telling me that I would always be his little girl, his "babe", and the necklace he gave me with it. If only his actions had ever once backed up those words.....

More prevalent are the memories like these:
"I liked you fine til you started talking"
When I broke my collarbone and he grabbed me by the arm, flinging me around, and proclaimed it was not broken.
His contribution to raising me when he told me my breath stunk and tried to teach me how to use Listerine at 10 years old.
Threatening to cut off my hair if I didn't stop with a nervous head-shaking twitch
Humiliating me in front of my friends
Throwing me down the stairs b/c I left a plate on the counter
Ruining holidays with his temper, sarcasm and silent brooding
Walking on eggshells around him at all times
Him drop kicking my cat off the back porch because she was meowing to go out
The inane morning competitions to get into the bathroom
Of course, the way he reacted to the abuse by yelling at me and forcing me to admit it was a lie
His hateful accusations of my being a whore

I'm sure I could go on and on with these but there really is no point. I searched online for an image to sum up the way I feel about him and his influence on my childhood and life but I could not find one. So, with the very patient cooperation of my DD, I made this one which says it all:

I give myself permission to grieve this loss. I wanted his love. Truthfully, I believe he did love me but only in his limited, conditional and warped definition of love. Nothing like the ways I needed it. But I don't need him or his love anymore. I have made it 38 years without it. And you know, I've turned out pretty damn good. And I can take the credit for that.

1 comment:

Rising Rainbow said...

I think the fact that there are good times is what makes it all so confusing. We feel guilty because there were good times but we feel so bad about our childhood and we think it's somehow our fault or that we're being ungrateful. But the fact is that the good times don't make the bad ones ok, they are still bad and those are what the pain comes from.