You watched over me.
I never knew until you told me.
You asked grandma and grandpa about me. You called while I was at their house and asked what I was doing.
They showed you pictures of me. They told you when I was hurt, when I cried, when I ran away…
You knew everything…like a secret agent.
Is that why it is so hard for you now? Are you so used to hiding in the shadows of your own regret that you cannot step out into the sunshine of what could be a father/daughter relationship?
It is not too late…
I will tell you now, it will never be too late. It has been nearly 15 years and I never gave up. What makes you think I would now?
I will die of old age, wishing the man I wished was my father would wish I was his daughter.
We always want what we cannot have…
REWIND… Back to the age of approximately 2.
What we cannot have….We cannot have our job and drink our beer too. Now, Dad #2 was not necessarily — #2 (like poo). He was a decent man. He is a decent man. He means well, but he just did not & does not get it. Women need stability, and he has about as much stability as a pirate with TWO peg legs.
I will never forget the day he left…
The day he left was burned into my small child brain like when you leave the television on pause for too long. The image stuck. It was nap time at my nana’s. He came over to say goodbye. Mommy had told him to leave. He kneeled down and kissed me on the forehead — his hand brushed my little cheeks. Then he made a promise he couldn’t keep, “I promise I’ll be back…” The little princess that I was expected him to keep his promise.
What my mom did not know was that as I got older (and learned how to use a phone book on my own), I started searching. Flipping through pages of the phone book looking up his last name. Typing in his name in Google and Yahoo search. Considering asking for an allowance so I could pay for one of those letters you get in the mail that tells you everything about them from where they lived previously to where they are now.
While kids were spending summers in the pool, I was digging through phone books – and sometimes my mom’s things. I found her old wedding ring in the filing cabinet. I found pictures of me – one where I am on the roof, his forearm holding me up there. Then I found a home video. We had gone to Oklahoma. I was a little bitty baby.
I remember too much.
I remembered the first time I watched Bambi was at his parent’s house. In the basement. While playing with hand sewn dolls and what was probably a doll house built by grandpa. But like I said, I remembered when he left…
Maybe I am a little obsessive. Spending my life searching for things that are long gone. It was all worth it though, because I found him. Even after you get to the end of all this – I am still going to tell you, it was worth it. I spent my life being told no, so I was going to search for somebody who would say yes.
Dad 2 moved in with us my senior year. He was a lot of firsts for me and I am thankful for that. I always will be. He came to my school for a presentation (Theatre class). He was so excited about it that he brought his video camera to record it. He took pictures with me before sending me off to prom. He threatened my boyfriend – “If you break her heart, I will break your neck”. To which my boyfriend candidly replied, “Thank you. Same to you.” and then they shook hands while my mom cried. Nobody had ever said that for me. Apparently nobody cared if my boyfriend broke my heart or not. He took me out to a “Father Daughter Lunch” where we discussed our favorites while watching the news about the recent whale attack at Sea World. I had an open faced turkey sandwich at Gerards.
One of my favorite comfort foods.
To be continued….