So Father’s Day was teed up to be pretty problematic. To set the stage, I had tried my hardest not to see my Father at least until it was absolutely necessary. It was made much easier due to COVID and his state being especially bad with it. So then I find out that during the week I had taken off, he was in the area and dropped in because of a wedding. My brother, who has always been the dadbuffer can’t come down to meet us halfway. I am really in it.
I dreaded the long march to Sunday. I had in my head all these stipulations like how I didn’t want to be there all day, especially if he was just going to drink. I had made up in my mind how much it would suck. I’d blown the whole thing up in my mind.
I used to say that I was a realist but, truthfully, once my wheels get going I tend to list towards the overdramatic. I just can’t help myself I get this feeling in my gut that I just seem to back my every fear and then I’m pretending that it’s prophetic. Like somehow my gut has never been wrong about anything ever especially my feelings towards women.
When I arrived at the place I was actually in a good mood. Considering that I had protested the week before and had that time off of work to just really enjoy my time recuperating from what has been a crazy season. COVID and Black Lives Matter are happening at the same time. It’s a tumultuous time for not just my people but, the whole of society. Things are changing and it feels good to be apart of that.
I will admit to having been turned around a few times because I’m literally no good with direction even with a GPS. (Yes, my people, I’m absolutely hopeless. I’m still hoping we’ll get built-in AR displays and I’ll get a minimap.) When I saw him a smile came to my face that I wasn’t expecting and most of my lunch went by without caution but, then he asked me.
“Is there anything I’d like to say to him I haven’t yet.” We’d had a nice lunch we talked about light things and serious stuff too. It was almost what I must assume other people’s relationship is like with their parents. But, he just had to ask and it was like a lead ball in my stomach. I looked around for exits but, there was none and the waitress was talking animatedly with a young kid. There was no way out.
It took me a while to speak. There was a long time there when I anxiously bounced my foot and messed with my hands. I felt like it ruined a rare and perfectly good time. There was a lot that I hadn’t said. Stuff that I didn’t really even know I needed to say but, I think he needed to hear it. I think it was less about me and more about him.
I told him that what he did, created a lot of my nervous ticks like not quite being able to look people in the eye or my loathing for confrontation. I think he needed to hear that I’m not sure what will I would say that would pop him off next and that it made talking to him hard. That definitely seemed to open his eyes a bit. That I was suffering from severe depression and that just made doing what he asked of me even more difficult. I was afraid most of that time and my memories of that time are more than a bit hazy but, what I will never forget is the fear.
I used to try so hard to find what little happiness I could find on the edge of despair. I did often wish I was dead. I don’t know how close this was or is to be suicidal but, it was how I felt. I never attempted but, I did wish for it a few times. It’s not something I try to bring up too often but, I know what my rock bottom feels like I’m not ever letting my self get there again.
He looked like he finally got it. Like a whole lot of things were put into perspective and he finally understood the whole picture. I think for him this was a wakeup call and for me, it was a release of a lot of the weight I was carrying around. I’ve felt so much lighter since and it has done wonders for my mental health. The years of deep introspective thought seem like they were finally worth it. Just being able to say the things I wanted to.
I don’t know what my relationship with my father will be like from now on but, I do know that now I can let some of this go. I’m better for finally being able to say my piece and maybe I’ll get a little closer to moving on.