We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

A tale of my father(s)

G turned 65 in March. He is a man who is near impossible to buy for. He doesn’t read—so no books, doesn’t like to watch movies—no DVDs, he doesn’t have any hobbies so none of the usual easy gifts ever work. He is a man who appreciates the thoughtfulness of a well worded card, or a random present, noticed in passing that he might enjoy. Nine years of birthdays, fathers days and Christmases has left me drained in the search for something to bring a smile to his face. This year I had the best idea. I wanted to have him adopt me. (now there is a gift you just can’t top right?) He has no kids biologically, but he stepped up to the plate ten years ago with my two brothers and me. He went from an immaculately tidy house to moving in with my Mum, the boys and I (bit of a change). He learned that it’s sometimes ok to hang your coat on the banister, and to pay closer attention when he comes home so he doesn’t trip over countless pairs of my shoes at the front door. My brothers and I watched with curious amusement at the growth of the relationship between him and my mother. Who was this strange man who showered in the dark and never wore socks? Who warned us never to drink pop right from the can and enjoyed drinking just plain hot water. Before he moved in with us he had central vac installed for my Mum as a surprise because he wanted to make her smile and to make vacuuming easier. When he saw how bad my youngest brother and I got allergies he had air conditioning installed so we could sleep easier during the summer months. He always had $20 to slip me to put in my gas tank…and there was nothing he ever asked for in return. He was the man who would become my father. He never once made me feel like we were a pain, or a burden…that he put up with us just because he loved my mother. In no time at all he was the man I looked up to as my male role model, the way I saw how relationships were supposed to be between two grownups who loved each other. He always listened to me even when I didn’t realize I was saying anything. He loved me unconditionally even during my awful late teenage rebellion years. I would hear him referring to me as “his daughter” to business associates and friends…how did I get to be so lucky? As the idea of him adopting me started out as more of a gift for him, it’s become such a gift for me as well. He has been my Dad for several years now, but the idea of making it “official” just really gives me a great sense of joy and peace.

My relationship with my biological father has fallen to a place that I don’t think can be repaired. Alcohol was more important to him that his family and I have lost him to that. He was never there for me during my formative years and I feel like I never really knew him. He still blames my Mum and everyone else I care about for his troubles instead of himself. He could have got help, he could have tried to stop drinking, he could have supported his 3 children once he was divorced but he never did. He is stuck in a place ten years ago still holding on to the hurt and anger and never moving forward. I wanted to try to have some form of civil relationship with him, but it just wasn’t possible. I don’t want to be put in a position of dealing with his manipulations any more. I am stronger, but a large part of that is because he isn’t in my life. Sometimes that is very difficult for me as my husband has never met him nor have many of the other important people in my life. When you are a child you never think that someone who should be such a large part of your life can be completely vacant from it. This is another reason that I want to be adopted; I want the fact that he is my father to have no power over me anymore. Maybe one day he can be in my life again, but it won’t be in the same position to destroy me as before. I also want the man who DESERVES the credit of being my father to be recognized by the government and whomever else as that.


  • G is a lucky man to have a daughter as wonderful as you and even if it isn't recognized in the eyes of the law, it is recognized in both your hearts which is where it truly matters. You are equally lucky to have him love you so unconditionally and whole heartedly (not that it's hard to do when you're so wonderful)

    By Blogger D. Jacob Miller, At June 21, 2006 2:03 PM  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home