Daddy Dearest…

So I was watching this movie earlier, called “Janie Jones”. It’s about this has-been rock star who, while in the middle of a comeback tour, suddenly finds himself responsible for a 13-year-old girl who turns out to be a daughter he never knew about. T lolhe plot is simple and predictable…you know how it goes. Rock star finds out he has a kid. Rock star denies it. Kid’s mother goes to rehab, leaves kid with Rock star Dad. Rock star changes his ways…grows up. Rock star starts to care…accepts kid as his. Rock star Dad and kid live happily-ever-after. THE END. Like I said…predictable. Even so, it wasn’t half-bad. It was actually kind of cute.

Anyhow, it got me thinking about my own father. Similar to the move, I never had a relationship with my father until I was 16. He wasn’t around much while I was growing up. I think I was about 3 years old or so when he and my mother split up–so I don’t have many memories of him and I. Believe it or not, I think it’s probably a good thing that I was so little and don’t remember too much. It was different for my sister and brother than it was for me. They were older when he left, so they remember more…which is why his leaving was a little harder on them. They have memories of him being there. I don’t. The old adage “you can’t miss what you never had”…well it rings true in this case. Him not being there was all I’d ever known, so it didn’t bother or affect me really. I only remember him coming around a couple of times when I was growing up…and even those memories are hazy. Sometimes I wish I could remember more though. I mean, it sucks, it really does. It’s especially hard when he calls and talks about all these things that he and I used to do together. Like how we’d go for ice cream every Sunday, just him and I. Yeah, I don’t remember doing that…or any of the other things he says we did, for that matter. It’s almost as though he thinks that if he talks about it enough, that I’ll suddenly remember. It’s not going to happen. It’s bittersweet, you know? I mean, it saddens me that I can’t remember…and frustrating because I wish that I could. On the hand, it makes me a little angry with him sometimes because, after all, it’s his fault that I don’t have those memories to begin with. I mean, he left, you know? He chose to walk out and not be a part of our lives. That was all his doing, not ours. Granted, he had his reasons for leaving and all, but still…he left us. His reasons aside, it was st ill wrong. He was our father. We needed him, and he wasn’t there.

It wasn’t just his leaving that hurt, though. He didn’t just move to another town. He moved to a whole other state, nearly 1000 miles away. He also got remarried and started a new family. And in doing so, it’s like he forgot about us. We have a step-sister and a step-mother, as well as an 18-year-old half-brother that we’ve never even met–who for years we were led to believe was just a step-brother. With that fact, there comes a sense of betrayal. I think what hurts most about the whole situation is knowing that he was there for them–his step-daughter and our half-brother–but he wasn’t here for us. Even though I know it’s not their fault that he chose to be a father to them and not to us–it’s hard to NOT feel somewhat resentful towards them. I mean, they had what at we should have had–what we DESERVED to have. He was there for their childhoods and to tuck them in at night and to teach them how to ride a bike. He went to their sports games and concerts and graduations…but not to ours. That kind of betrayal…I don’t think it ever goes away, no matter how many years go by. It just doesn’t.

To his credit, he wasn’t a deadbeat dad. Not technically. He paid child support, just like he was supposed to. I have to give him points for that I guess–considering all the deadbeats and sperm donors out there that plant their seed and run for the hills, so to speak. Maybe I’m being ungrateful for saying this, but it wasn’t enough. We deserved more. And all the child support and money in the world cannot and will not make up for him not being there or the lost years of time that we will never ever get back. He missed so much. I mean, granted that’s his loss and something that he will have to live with for the rest of his life…but it’s also ours.

I guess I should just be grateful that we have a relationship now–considering everything that’s happened. And I am grateful…I am…but still. Sometimes I can’t help but wonder what might have been–had I not taken the initiative and contacted him all those years ago, like I did. I wonder if he would have bothered to contact or seek me out, when or if at all. If I hadn’t called him–would he have ever called me?

I must have asked myself a hundred times–if not more–over the years…asked why. So many whys. Like why did he leave? Why didn’t he want us? Why we weren’t enough for him to stay? When I was a kid–and before I knew better–I was sure it must have been something that we did that made him go. That we’d done something to somehow make him love us less. Naturally, as I got older, I eventually realized the absurdity in that kind of thinking. I know now that it wasn’t our fault and that we weren’t to blame for his leaving…at all. It sounds crazy, but I think it would have been better if we had been to blame…for the reality and the truth of his leaving hurts far more–in that he chose to leave us because he wanted to and simply because he could. What’s even worse is that he didn’t even bother to stay in touch…though he had ample opportunity to do so. He could have called more. He could have visited more. He chose to do neither.

While I’m grateful that we now have a relationship of sorts, it’s also really hard sometimes–mostly because I know it’s not like it should be…and it never will be. All the time in the world isn’t going to change or erase the fact that he wasn’t there It’s always going to be there between us, whether we like it or not.


**P.S. I found this poem from years ago..**

Daddy Dearest

Where did you go?

I need you here.

Daddy, please come home.

Tell me what to do,

Tell me how to feel.

Why can’t you see–?

How much I need you here?

To check my closet for monsters and calm my fears,

To dry these tears,

The ones I’ve held back all these years.

Take me away, from here.

I’ll go with you, I’ll go anywhere.

Daddy, where are you?

Why can’t you hear my plea?

Why don’t you care?

Why wasn’t I enough–

Enough to make you stay?

Why’d you have to go away?

So very far away.

You don’t write.

You don’t call.

Just birthday cards in June,

and Christmas, too.

That’s all I ever get from you.

X’s and O’s and crisp, folded bills.

It’s not enough, why can’t you see?

I don’t want your money.

I just want you here.

With me.

Daddy, please…say you miss me.

Say you love me.

Say it wasn’t easy—?

To just walk away and leave?

What did I do wrong to make you go?

If I say I’m sorry, will you come home?

Please Daddy, I feel so alone.

I can’t do this on my own.

There’s still so much that I don’t know…

But oh, how fast the years have flown.

I’m almost thirteen now, you know.

I’d like to think that you’d be proud,

If only you could see me now, somehow.

But just like mom, you’re not around.

She’s with him; she’s always gone.

And when I need her most, she’s nowhere to be found.

Why can’t she see that what she’s doing is wrong?

It’s like I don’t matter to her at all.

If only I could get away.

I doubt she’d notice anyway.

It’d be so easy…I could just disappear.

Go anyplace, go anywhere.

Daddy, I need you here.

To hold my hand,

To show me the way.

To tell me everything will be okay.

Come home, Daddy, please.

Come back home…to me.

 (JLR 2000)


P.P.S. Some lyrics to go with… “Confessions of a Broken Heart

“…And I carry the weight of the world on my shoulders. Family in crisis that only grows older. Why’d you have to go? Daughter to Father. I am broken, but I am hoping. Daughter to Father. I am crying. A part of me’s dying…And I dream of another you. One who would never, never leave me alone to pick up the pieces. A daddy to hold me, that’s what I needed. Daughter to Father. I don’t know you, but I still want to. Daughter to Father. Tell me the truth. Did you EVER love me? And these are the confessions…of a broken heart…”




It’s Magic, You Know…

Well blog, it’s THAT time of year again–Christmas, that is. is it just me–or does it not seem like the year has just flown by? I think it has. As chaotic as it can be sometimes, I love Christmas and this time of year. It sounds childish, but it really does feel a little magical, you know? It’s there. it’s in the eyes of little kids that still believe in Santa Claus, and the faces that light up when they see all those presents under the tree. It’s something else, it really is. it makes you wish you were that little kid all over again–that things were that simple again.

I went a little overboard this year on presents for the little ones, but it’ll be worth it to see their faces comes Sunday morning. I love spoiling them. I can’t help myself…

Anyhow…can’t get these song lyrics out of my head. Thanks a lot Kelly Clarkson.

TRACK: “What Doesn’t Kill You, Makes You Stronger”–so true.

You know the bed feels warmer,
sleeping here alone.
You know I dream in color,
and do the things I want.
You think you got the best of me.
Think you had the last laugh.
Bet you think that everything good is gone.
Think you left me broken down.
Think that I’d come running back.
Baby, you don’t know me–
’cause you’re dead wrong.

What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.
Stand a little taller.
Doesn’t mean I’m lonely,
when I’m alone.
What doesn’t kill you makes a fighter,
footsteps even lighter.
Doesn’t mean I’m over,
’cause you’re gone.
What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger
Just me, myself, and I.

You heard that I was starting over with someone new.
They told you I was moving on, and over you.
You didn’t think that I’d come back–
I’d come back swinging. You tried to break me but you see…
Thanks to you I got a new thing started
Thanks to you I’m not the broken-hearted
Thanks to you I’ve finally thinking ’bout me
You know in the end–
the day you left was just my beginning…

On The Right Track…

So it’s been duly noted that I’ve been somewhat remiss in my blogging lately. Sorry. It’s been a whirlwind past couple of months–what with school and work and well–those are basically it. It sounds so boring, but it is what it is. If I’m not in class, I’m usually at work. And vice versa.

Speaking of work–things are really going great. Have I mentioned that I started a new job bartending a few months ago? Well, I did. Honestly, I wasn’t too keen on the whole idea at first. It just seemed so cliché–going to school full-time and bartending at night to pay the bills…you know. But I knew that if I really wanted to get myself back on track with school–then I’d have to say goodbye to that 9-5 world. So I did. And now, I’m very happy and quite satisfied with the decision I made. For starters, with bartending–I’ve finally found something that I actually like doing. A job that I don’t dread going to, unlike the monotonous ones I’ve had in the past. Most of the time, it doesn’t feel like work it all. Rather, it feels like I’m getting paid to pretty much just socialize and have fun. Which is great. The people I work with are so nice and just really down-to-earth. It sounds so corny, but already it seems like we’ve all been friends for years. I love it.

I’ll admit, it was a little overwhelming at first. It definitely took some getting used to. I was intimidated by it all initially. It was a little out of my comfort-zone, so to speak. By that, I mean that at the time, I’d grown accustomed to living in this quiet little world that I’d created for myself after everything with you know who. I’d become a completely different person that I had been. I hadn’t gone out or socialized or even stepped foot in a bar in nearly two years by then. It wasn’t that I couldn’t go out or do those things–it was that I preferred not to. Not to start rehashing on everything again, but a lot of people thought that the reason I chose not to do those things was mainly due to him and what had happened. Not that it mattered to me what they believed or thought–but it just wasn’t true. I wasn’t running away from life or what from what had happened. And I most definitely wasn’t hiding out from him. Definitely NOT. Granted it’s true that I wasn’t too keen on the idea or possibility that I might run into him at one point or another–but that wasn’t the reason. It took me a long time to realize it, but eventually I did. I realized that what I’d been doing wasn’t right. That the life I was living wasn’t the life I wanted and that I was on a road to nowhere. But most importantly, I realized that I loathed with all my being what–moreover, who–I had become. After that, I just couldn’t do it anymore. By “it” I mean the partying and drinking and well…all of it. I’d literally hit rock-bottom at that point. I’d lost so much–given up even more. I’d screwed up my life and in the process of doing that–I caused a lot of damage. While it wasn’t intentional, it was still my doing. Mine. That said, it was up to me to fix it. So that’s what I set out to do. I stopped doing those things that I mentioned. I stayed away from temptation and trouble and drama.

Admittedly, I may have taken things to the extreme a little–especially with the way I wrote off my friends and that life completely for nearly an entire year. In hindsight, I do regret doing that–and that alone. I hurt a lot of people by doing what I did. And myself. I guess you could say that the small comfort I have is that–that knowing that I suffered too for my decision to just walk away. And I did suffer. It was pure hell–unimaginably so–it being that way. I had no one. I’d pushed away all my friends and spoke to no one. I even kept my family at arms’ length. I didn’t let anyone in–didn’t let anyone see what was really happening and going on in my life. I scared and worried a lot of people. Hell, I even scared myself sometimes. As much as it sucked though–on some level–I think I needed that. That I needed the time and space and distance just to clear my head–to figure everything out. Albeit it took far longer than I expected it would for me to do that, but I did. And that’s all that really counts.

One of the down-sides to what I did though was that I changed a lot. At some point, I’d gone from being this outgoing, fun-loving party girl to this quiet and shy introvert. Bartending seems to have changed that though. Which is a good thing, I think. Not that I’ve reverted to my old ways or anything, because let’s face it–that’s not going to happen. Of that I’m certain. It’s actually pretty funny. The people I work with will sometimes tease me about how much I’ve changed the past couple of months–mainly how I went from being this timid little bit of a girl who was almost too shy to ask for a drink order–to rounding up unruly drunks and kicking them out of the bar when two o’clock comes around. I have no problem yelling over the bar or cutting off the ones that have had too much. I even stand my ground when it comes to those sloppy-touchy-feely pervs that seem to think it’s ok to get drunk and cop a feel whenever the female bartender walks by. Umm, yeah. Naturally, there’s some disadvantages. But mostly just perks. So yeah, I love my job.

Its hectic sometimes, what with school and all. Speaking of which–today was my last day of classes. 🙂 YAYYYYYY!!! I just have a couple of finals next week and then I’m officially done for the semester. The months just seem to have flown by. Which must be a good sign or something. I did great in my classes and I’m pretty proud of myself. I’m glad I finally got things together and went back to school, I truly am. Whereas before I felt like I was going nowhere–like my life was on pause for the time-being–now I feel like I’m actually getting somewhere. It’s a great feeling. Refreshing. It’s also a big relief. I didn’t think I could do it. That I could get back into the swing of things after my not so brief hiatus from college. But I did it. And the best part of it all is that I did it on my terms this time. On my time-table. Most importantly–I did it for me–and not for anyone else. Me.

I’m happy. Or close to it…


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