This is my first Father’s Day without my dad and I am conflicted. My dad was the person who took me to have surgeries. He was the person to buy me ice cream. As I got older, he was the one who would defend me to my teachers and make sure that I was being treated fairly. We often joked about who would have the last of the custard or bread pudding. When I was in high school, we went to the same junior college. People around us took half of the semester to realize that we were related.
Then there was the other side of my dad. The side that seemed to not be able to reign in his anger. The one who beat me beyond a spanking. He often told me that he could not stand the sight of me and to go to my room. At times he put me up against a door or a wall by my neck. There were other things that he also did when he was angry that made me feel like he hated me and wished that I would just go away.
Then there was the frail man in the hospital bed. The one that was in so much pain that he could not even pay in the same position for a few minutes. At times, I would need to ask the nurses if he could have anything more for the pain. I was there for the last days.
I feel like I should only be preserving the good memories, yet there were both and I feel like my life is flat without both. He was my greatest advocate who also happened to be one of the people who hurt me the most. Luckily, I have my therapist to help me work through all of this because I know that I could not do any of this by myself.
So on this first Father’s Day without him, I gruels that’s I need to begin to accept that he was both. That is the problem with working through childhood abuse. Often the abuser is someone who is also a caregiver. In my case one that I just wanted to please.
It all started with a call on a Saturday afternoon that my dad was in the hospital. The doctors did not expect him to make it. After not seeing him for at least 5 years, I went to the hospital to say a final goodbye.
My mother was pissed that I was even visiting him. The next day she called me for a ride to the hospital and now she has some how slithered her way back into my life. She calls at least 4 times a week. Often it is to relive my father’s final months and days.
I am not dealing well with my own grief. I am like a zombie, barely functioning. I cannot handle her. On top of that one of my child.has began to self harm. They are stressed about how my mother treats me. They feel like she hurts more than helps.
School is over for the semester. By some miracle I passed my classes. The next few days, all that I could do was sleep. Life has caught back up to me. Therapy and doctor’s appointments are still on the calendar. I still have my dancers to teach one night a week. Winter break is not going to be as relaxing as I thought at first. I really need to work on the issues that were brought up this semester in therapy and in class. Next semester, I have some pretty challenging classes to get through related to what I went through as a child.
My ex is not letting me see my kids until New Year’s. This is the first year that I will not see the kids on or near Christmas day. Court is still on the horizon for next month. Hopefully that will be the end of things for a while.
Yesterday, I lost a friend. She battled cancer for a long time and became a true angel yesterday. I wish I had half of her optimism. She lived everyday to the fullest and never let the pain get her down. She was a true inspiration to everyone who met her. She also was one of those special people who accept others for who they are. Flaws and all. I was lucky to have been a part of her life.
Next week, I have to start going into the past. The nightmares will probably begin and I will have trouble sleeping. Parts of me will fight over how much to tell and when to tell. We know that we need to do this. It has been a long time coming. The past is not going to change just because it is talked about and is out in the open!
Today in therapy, I was all over the board. When I was in Psych, I learned the nice linear stages of grief. To bad they are actually not like that at all. Just when I think I have gotten through one stage, something happens that seems to put me right back there.
My mind and my body are definitely not in sync. My brain still wants to be able to get out of bed in the morning and start the day. My body has to lay in bed, stretch, maybe take a shower, and hopefully be able to function.
I miss what I used to be able to do. Physical therapy is helping. I also had a med change yesterday that I am surprised seems to be working. Crossing my fingers that it will continue.
I have the service dog to look forward to and the kids are coming this weekend. Well at least two out of three. One has plans and I want him to be able to have a good time. Life is to short to not experience what one can.
Tomorrow, I do not have any doctors appointments!!! How great to be able to have a day to recuperate. Not to long from now, I will be going on my son’s field trip. I need to realize my limits and listen to my body instead of just pushing through everything.
Tomorrow is a new day. Who knows how I will feel when I wake up tomorrow. Will I deny that I even have an illness or be mad that it has taken some of the things away that I enjoy the most in this life? I shall see.