The day after writing and reading (to my writing group) the poem at the end of this post, Absentee Dads Suck, And No I Guess I’m Not Over It After All, I had a panic attack on the bus. I haven’t had one of those in a few years. I also haven't spoken publicly about my panic attacks before. Quite frankly I was messed up for a couple of weeks after that. I was pissed and confused about my emotional reaction. I have no idea why my brain reacted the way it did but I’m okay now.
Talking and writing brings me closer to forgiveness, therefore moving along in my life path. Dwelling in misery does nothing but let the misery continue to flourish. I will never forget, as I’ve been directed by many to do and because my brain is functioning.
Forget, sometimes I wish it was that easy. Press a button and the memories and feelings drop into the recycle bin. Life would be simpler, less complicated. It would allow me to more easily accept the good that comes from various aspects of my life.
For those who say you should honour your mother and father, I have to disagree. Honour along with respect is earned, not automatically given. I respect most people because they are a fellow human being. For me to respect your "role" in my my life, that must be earned.
I’m glad that I no longer have to acknowledge Father's Day. (Which is June 16th, in some parts of the world.) I know I’m not the only one who doesn’t celebrate it or feel bad about not celebrating it. It’s life, whether others' disagree with my decision or not.
I never gave the day a thought, at least that I can recall, when it came to my biological father. Or as I call him, the sperm donor. Yes, I refer to him as that. Sorry if it offends people. Never as an adult have I called him dad, in the infrequent conversations that we have had. It makes for an awkward start and finish to a conversation, but I won’t force myself to say what he hasn’t been for most of my life.
I also haven’t pretended to care about Father's Day for the last 6 plus years, since my step-dad died. In his last few years, I stopped calling him dad and referred to him as Mr. Xxxxxx in conversation. He didn’t seem to mind because he had an authoritative personality to begin with. Another story all together. To say that I didn’t feel relief that I no longer have to acknowledge the day, would be a lie. It's a wonderful weight off of my shoulders.
Being truthful can be painful for all parties. Feelings get hurt. Emotions can fly high. Some relationships are severed. Some are strengthened. Some are forever broken. Some never get the chance to heal. Whether from death, or reluctance (that would be me) on a person's part.
99% of my thoughts are not about the lack of father figures in my life. I don’t have the energy, time, and it’s just not healthy for me. I concentrate on the people in my life who are constant, loyal, and love me. Would I love to have a father figure in my life? Of course but I don’t dwell on it. If it’s to happen, it will.
This isn’t about father or male bashing. It just happens to be my truth, a truth that I am no longer going to be afraid to acknowledge and share. I don’t purposely try to hurt people but in cases like this easing my hurt to move along my life path, takes priority.
I love men, the good ones, the honest ones, the loyal ones. The ones that follow through on their commitments. I’ve been blessed to see and experience this for myself, after a childhood and young adulthood of constant disappointment and hurt. So I do know that good men exist.
Good men and fathers are out there loving, caring, and staying committed to the children that they helped bring into this world. I’m not jaded, anymore. I’m just not pretending that despite the passage of time, relationships are healed and cruising along. They may be healed in the future, they may not. I didn’t have the chance to heal the relationship with my step-dad, because he’s dead. The relationship with the sperm donor may develop, it may not. Who knows what the future will hold. I'm always open to change.
These days I concentrate on the positive things in my life. The start of a new career (writing) & life path that I'm learning to love. Love that I wouldn’t trade for the world. Family, friends and Kai the cat to name a few. More importantly loving myself and my life no matter how untidy it can be. All of the negative things that occur, do so for a reason. A life lesson, at least I hope so. If I can make it through the bad stuff, I can only imagine how great things will be when life goes according to “plan”.
I believe the life lesson for me is no matter how far I've come, I still have a long way to go. I think I'll always have some mountain to climb, like many of you, but I'll continue to grow and evolve as life goes on. I also believe that this forceful wave of emotion was a way to pull me back, keeping me conscious of where I need to continue to work, to move forward. Keep me balanced in all aspects of life. Kind of like the elite athlete who has never been beaten, and the winning has gone to their head. Life is getting better and making more sense but I still have to carve out time, in the increments that work best for me, to continue on my journey to being the best person that I can be.