A couple of days ago I heard that my dad had a heart attack and was in hospital.
I carried on working until 7pm more focussed than I ever am normally.
I heard today that he is ok. I knew he would be. He will probably outlive us all.
But what happened in between those few days has changed me. It’s not like I’ve never wondered what it might feel like to get that news. I always felt like I would feel full of regrets and sadness and be desperately rushing to try to find a connection with him before it was too late.
And yet when the moment came I felt completely indifferent. A lack of feeling from the girl who feels everything. As though it was nothing to do with me.
It isn’t really anything to do with me. I have no contact with him, he has no involvement in my life and he doesn’t know me.
I hoped he was ok but I didn’t feel any want or need to be anywhere near him.
In fact I wished I had not been told. When he has surfaced it has only ever caused me pain.
In a time that is feeling difficult in its own right it felt like he was stamping his importance in being the real dad as opposed to the substitute version. Disguised as the helpless and vulnerable victim.
Leaving me looking like the villain in my lack of compassion.
Because I’m expected to care about him even though he has had no care for me. Where has he been through all these years and in all of my struggles. Completely invisible. Nowhere to be seen. Non existent.
It took numb to a whole new level as everyone assumed that I would be beside myself with worry and upset.
I just went Christmas shopping.
After a nights sleep, numb and indifference turned into angry.
Angry with myself as I started to beat myself up in not caring. In the end he is your dad. The only one you will ever have. You have cared all this time, why stop now?
Wondering if I’m a monster because I have no wish to contact him again even in his moment of need.
Perhaps I’m just tired of being the unconditional parent.
Of saying that it is ok that he hasn’t bothered or made any effort, or taken any responsibility for letting me down so badly. Perhaps I don’t feel very forgiving at this point in the show.
You haven’t cared about how much you hurt me through the years and will go to your grave without rectifying that in making me feel loved as a treasured daughter. But I’m supposed to care about you.
All that time you could have made the effort. To try to be a dad. I never needed perfection, just effort. But you couldn’t be bothered. You had your nice comfortable life with everything you ever wanted and all new replacements to enhance your world. You certainly haven’t needed me. But the point is that it isn’t about being needed. It’s about being wanted.
Perhaps I would only be wanted in your moment of need. To take away any guilt you might feel?
Or what? .. be left carrying it after you are gone if I refuse to take it. I refuse!
I’ve spent most of my life caring for someone who didnt care about me, or in fact anyone, as much as you do for yourself. Every thing you ever do is with your own happiness in mind. You wouldn’t even understand the concept of doing something for someone else without there being something in it for you.
It’s always been about what’s in it for you.
So it appears that I do have a limit. I’m just a normal girl who has constantly felt the repercussions of you bullying me as a little kid and then when you had squashed me and made me feel so insecure about who I was, disappearing and becoming completely absent. Without ever offering an apology for any of it.
But I no longer wish to feel any of that.
You can take it back. It belongs to you. You live with it and take it with you.
Rather than needing to fix or resolve what this is I need to feel comfortable in letting it go. The relationship we could have had was lost many many years ago and not because I wasn’t good enough.
Because if you really knew me you would know that actually I am something you neither have or understand.
Im sensitive and caring who loves with all my heart. And the people that matter to me and who love me back, know that.
They may not share my blood but they will always have my care in good times and bad.
Because they make the effort. Just a little is all it takes with me but without it it’s not a relationship.
I grieved for your absence a very long time ago but the loss has always been yours.