It’s Father’s Day & what a strange swirling of emotions & feelings I’m experiencing. Fathers are so important to us, so much power is placed in their hands by us girls. Perhaps it is just too much & we set them up for failure from the git go. I wish I had happy memories & stories of me & dad to reflect on today, but I don’t. I wish I had a photo from my childhood of the two of us smiling & laughing, carefree & happy, but I don’t. The funny thing is that I didn’t realize our lives were so different than most until after college when I had friends who shared their childhood stories. They were far different than mine.
Today my father is in a residential nursing facility in Sun City, CA. He has dementia. He is happier today than I’ve ever experienced him. I think in this state of dementia he is learning to open up a little, to allow other’s in a little. He told me over the phone that he always thought he was better than others & he didn’t know where he got that from, but in this facility he says it’s the weirdest thing but more people like him than ever before. I believe he held himself out of love his entire life. That is sad to me, but at least in his 70th year he is feeling what it feels like to have other’s like him.
I’m not so interested in digging up my childhood abuse & laying it out on the table to sift through anymore. I have spent many years in different processes sifting, churning, turning over & releasing most of it (it is a lifetime journey). Today I’m more interested in just being “in Love,” feeling infinite love, being in love’s embrace (as much as I can allow), appreciating love & not getting too tangled up in the sticky-ness of blame & judgment.
My daughter, Raine is spending this Father’s Day in the last day of the Landmark Forum for Teens. She wrote a letter to her father last night to present today to the group. Her father has not made an attempt to see her in over three years. She hadn’t heard from him in two years then he sent her a Christmas card in January with an already used gift card in it. He texts her once every few months now asking how she is doing & when she answers he doesn’t reply. I ache for her & also know that she will work through this & come out a strong woman capable of accomplishing all she desires because of it (in fact she already is that).
I’m grateful she has Larry as a dad who daily embraces her as his own daughter, supports her, adores her and holds her accountable for participating in our family. He is an incredible man.
My son, Finnegan has a daddy who takes him to Home Depot regularly (they are there now). Larry is building Finn a mini work bench in the garage which will stand next to Larry’s. That way they can work together. In April he took his older boys, Zac & McKenzie to Nicaragua to surf & fish. Larry is showing all of us, to include himself, his best expression of fatherhood.
I always liked the idea that children choose their parents before coming here. I like how it flips everything upside down & turns the responsibility back on us, as children to decide why we chose this particular man to be our dad.
To all the expressions of daddy out there. Thank you for doing all that you can do, because it really is all you can do & as Kermit said, “it’s not easy being green” or being a dad.