Monday, January 31, 2011

Today or Yesterday

My father died seventeen years ago yesterday or today.  I can never remember the exact date.

I don't think about my father very much anymore.  When I was two my parents separated.  They divorced when I was five.

I don't remember him ever living at home and I never lived with him.  He remarried soon after the divorce and I found out after his death that his wife didn't like my brother or me and didn't want him around.  I thought it was my dad. Maybe it was.  But what a thing to think all those years -- that it was primarily him not wanting me around and much of it was his wife.

On the other hand, hello.  I wouldn't have done that to my children.   We used to go over to his house, when we still lived in the same town, and he would stay in the bedroom with his wife and my brother and I would sit and watch TV for hours until he took us home.  It sucked.  It sucked being rejected and then rejected again.

I wonder if he were still alive if I would ask him about it now?  If he ever would have gotten around to saying he cared or he was sorry?  Maybe he didn't care.  I have a cousin who swears he was the best person on earth and that he was her best friend in many ways.  I can't hardly stand her for that.  I can't reconcile that while he avoided me he was going out of his way to be good to her.

Seventeen years ago yesterday or today my father died.  He was shoveling snow in a small town in Iowa.  I cried during the gun salute at the graveside.  I didn't know what I was crying for.

I still don't.


Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

My father told me a few years ago that it would be best if we didn't talk or see each other anymore. Like he broke up with me. I suspect it was more my mom than him, but the fact that he went along with it hurts as if it were his own feelings. Maybe it is his feelings. But I feel your pain--parental rejection is the worst kind.
So, peace to you. And feel free to hate that cousin. I would.

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

My very absentee, but never totally out of touch, father began to feel his mortality about 10 years ago, when he turned 60. He's never apologized--I don't think it would occur to him that he did anything wrong. I see him and talk to him occasionally, but really don't feel much for him.

Whether it was his wife or not, he chose to defer to her. Some people are just weak--be glad you are not one of them.

Magpie said...

Ouch is right. My father left my mother and us kids for another woman. For a long time, we hardly saw him. I am glad though, that we now again have a relationship. I'm sorry you didn't get that.

Sophia the Writer said...

This is why I read your blog. To hear your words and those of your commenters; it's a support community of sorts.

This was a chilling post, and spoken so well.

Jennifer said...

No matter how old we get, there's still a empty place left behind by a parent who chooses not to be one.