This was meant to be posted the weekend of Father’s Day and needless to say- it never happened. Today’s short blog post goes over a brief history with my dad, and forgiveness. As always, feel free to follow me here on WordPress or via any available social media platforms.
Two years ago, one of my earliest blogs was about my relationship with my dad. Click here for some background reading before or after you finish reading this blog. Not much has changed since the original post, except one thing: forgiveness.
My counselor a few weeks back found a poem that he had seen on social media (speaking of counseling, I’ve gotten loads better since 2012). I went and looked it up. Sure enough, it was what I needed to hear.
How Do We Forgive Our Fathers?
How do we forgive our Fathers?
Maybe in a dream
Do we forgive our Fathers for leaving us too often?
Or forever when we were little?
Maybe for scaring us with unexpected rage
Or making us nervous
Because there never seemed to be any rage there at all.
Do we forgive our Fathers for marrying or not marrying our Mothers?
For Divorcing or not divorcing our Mothers?
And shall we forgive them for their excesses of warmth or coldness?
Shall we forgive them for pushing or leaning
For shutting doors
For speaking through walls
Or never speaking
Or never being silent?
Do we forgive our Fathers in our age or in theirs
Or in their deaths
Saying it to them or not saying it?
If we forgive our Fathers what is left?
I lived with my dad from ages seven to eleven. Because of the stronghold discipline I grew up with, I lashed it out on my younger sister when I moved in with my mother’s side of the family, when I was eleven or twelve. I didn’t comprehend my borderline abusive patterns (my views, no one else’s) until I started college and didn’t have a younger sister to feel like I have to control.
My dad was always in control over family matters, my personal and social life, just for a few examples. Which then lead to me being a tad bit of a control freak on my mom and sister’s lives. Did anyone deserve the consistent bullying from me? No, no one deserves that.
I realized around my freshman year in college, that the reason why my dad was abusive (mentally, mainly) was because that’s how he was raised. His grandfather raised his father like that, and so that’s how my dad grew up. Possibly generations of fatherly restrictions on what you can and can’t do as a child. Depriving a child of going into the performing arts? That’s too far, in my book.
There are some positives that I have begun to appreciate, years after moving out of that destructive house. I learned what discipline is and how to work with it, at a young age. I learned a lot of ways to deal with with difficult people. Just smile and move on. One way I have also learned from those artistic deprived days, was to bear a mask over my emotions and the rules of not trusting anyone. Some of those tiny works, trust issues- has been a working progress this year.
I also learned how to take care of dogs and how to build a fence post. Is that knowledge needed now? No. Might come in handy for a book or two.
For all those reasons, I want to thank my dad for the harder lessons he taught me. While I disagree with 95% of his parenting techniques and skills, I am glad I can pass on my inner knowledge to other parents. By the way, I don’t want kids at all (future blog on that subject). Over the past two years, I have started to restructure my lifestyle to include time for what I was deprived off as a childhood- creativity & artistic time.
The last I heard from my biological father, was that he was having health issues during the 2017 holiday season. The letter was sent to my mom, and just recently have I felt an urge to write to him. I used to write letters to him from 2013-2014 but then I stopped because I hadn’t gotten past the forgiveness part. If I were given a chance to write to my dad, I would want a detailed family history of his family and some rumors addressed.
Always remember to thank your father or grandfather or other family members for what they have been able to provide. Especially, in my view, if you had a childhood with positive memories. If your family members you’d like to thank are deceased, you can always thank God/Universe/whatever-you-believe for the wonderful family you got to grow up with.
Forgiveness isn’t easy. I don’t have any advice for forgiving someone for damage they caused. Each person finds a way to forgive what needs to be forgiven. Mine just happened to take a decade.
Next weeks blogs will be more positive and I want to thank you for always reading the blogs I post weekly. As always, I wish you the best and enjoy your weekend!