Saturday, December 27, 2008


Your father is asked to leave by your mother. She no longer loves him and hasn't wanted to be with him for quite sometime. They divorce.

You now have a "Once upon a time dad", that when married to your mom, was very involved with the household. He'd cook, he'd clean, he devoted his time to his family, though his job track record was shaky. Then Post Divorce, eventually the time and the consistency with good ole Dad fades, and one day he just stops all communication. Gone. Your last name is changed to your mom's maiden name and that's the end of the story.

Until the present, years later, 30 years or so, he's back.
By your searching, by you seeking him out. How long do you expect dad to pay for his past mistakes. How long until it's enough. What if Dad never comes right out and asks you for forgiveness. What if your "once upon a time dad" had become jacked up on drugs and went downhill after the divorce. Had his heart broken from your mom. How long does he owe you. Do you ask for all those years of no child support back. Do you blame him for hurting you because his heart was broken and shockingly taken by your mom. Can you even ask him for the back child support because your last name was changed without Dad's consent.

How much of this do you forgive. Can you forgive. Taking all of the pieces here in this story and basing your decision on strictly what's been written here. Judge him based on the words in the above paragraphs. How does it make you feel knowing that somewhere out there a dad disappeared on his children for reasons that truthfully we'll never understand, or know because we were just innocence back then.

Do you discriminate against the mom for conspiring to leave him, is your heart softened somewhat for the "once upon a time dad" because of the different circumstances that he had gone through back then. The classical understanding and being less hard on him for those times. Or don't you. Do you just walk away. Sorry for seeking him out.

How long do you carry the grudge. How long do you carry your own insecurities about what dad did to you, onto your own children. Do you carry your guilt on your children's shoulders. Do you avoid having children because of the lack of role model in your life. Had your "once upon a time dad" actually remained in your life, would that have made you more damaged because of his own issues back then. Would you have had a worse relationship with him based on what he wasn't capable of giving.

My best friend always says, "you treat people how to treat you," and she is so right. How though.
How do you desensitize yourself in order to remove the bad scent of your habits, in order to be treated better, or rather treated the way you want to be treated. How do you start teaching the people that make up your circle.

A pup isn't behaving and she's hording her bones underneath your bed. Note to readers, doggies aren't supposed to hoard bones, they bury them, but they don't sit on them like a duck would her eggs. One day, that doggie growls at you. She growls at you while hiding under your bed with her bones. Dogs aren't supposed to do that, therefore you must undo that habit by removing the source of the problem, the bones. Then slowly over time; weeks, months, the whatever moments in life, you re-introduce her to that bone, but on your conditions. Or is that considered controlling.
I'd like to think it's as simple as the word, Desensitize. It's not control, it's conditioning, it's you teaching her how she should treat you when you reward her with special treats.

Perhaps it's the same with teaching people how you want to be treated. You're 30 years old and suddenly you realize you don't like how people treat you, you realize it's because of your own actions, after years of talking with your best friends, but then one day you open your eyes and firmly put your foot down to "take the bone away" from yourself so to speak. Only then you ask, how do I do that.

How do I change my habit without hurting those that I want to treat me better. It's that mixture of this soupy imbalance, that makes it challenging. Because you can't help but have your true inner self peak out even if you're trying to change the nicey nice part of you. Or whatever part you want to undo and relearn.

Do you let that affect you with dad. Or rather do you allow the entire past to effect you. Effect or Affect in the big circle it all seems to mean the same when you're attempting to reteach yourself and others.

Do you drastically change this with your family or friends. Do you speak out more, respectfully testing out your tongue, to tell people you don't like what's going on. Do you leave those people behind permanently, not going back ever again, because you're just so over all the drama. Because you feel it's not repairable. Do you recognize who plays the bully and who is more the passive one. Do you stop your giving because you grow tired of not being treated the same way you treat others. Do you realize or come to terms with the fact that you can't get what you give out. The person is only capable of what they can give, not what you can give. They aren't card people who remember birthdays and anniversaries. You give them a pass. Or do you expect them to make an effort by you making less of an effort. It's complicated isn't it.

Like the balance of sorrow and joy in life, there both.

Do you trust in your heart that even though your dad hasn't asked you for forgiveness, he feels sorry for what he did.

So how long do you carry a grudge, if you do carry them. Are you a pocket book handler or more the big diaper bag of dirty diapers that seem to weigh you down as you walk through your life years. Or do you pass that dirty diaper onto those that you dub the faulty ones, because it's never your fault, it's always theirs.

Damn question mark is sooo needed here. So, once upon a time I knew this girl, a shy girl that liked to please..then one day she got tired of it, so she decided to stop.

Once Upon A Time she had a title for this post but decided she'd rather dot it out.


Kathy said...

A wise person once told me that the answers are within. Just thought I'd pass that on to you...

Cheryl said...

I'm with Kathy. You're deep girl, but very cryptic. You're kind and good and you have to decide. What can you live with?

JLee said...

I say open your heart. My dad and I developed more of a relationship after I was 30 and I'm glad and better off for it. :)

Palm Springs Savant said...

I think its been said here, but I'll add this: It is entirely possible that this is a karmic event in your life. How you handle it may impact other areas of your life.

austere said...

I wouldn't be able to. There is a cost to the lost years.

Sorry. Its not pc, I know.

There is a lot I have to learn about forgive and forget, Crusty. A lot.

happyone said...

Wow, you do know how to write!!
I think you just have to do what your heart says.
Me, I would forgive. I think holding on to past hurts and grudges just make you feel worse. If you can forgive you can get past it and move on.

Anonymous said...

When a child loses a parent, in any form, there's a grief process to follow. Dad-less needs to be open to periods of those 5 feelings, and when the bulk of it is expressed, in whatever form suits the person, and what ever time frame, there is more peace with the whole issue. "More peace" being relative, because those feelings of hurt and abandonment will never be completely gone. When "more peace" is reached, then Dad-less will have an easier time recognizing what is needed. Let it go? Ask for apology? Question Dad's feelings about the absent years? Mention to Mom some less than pc feelings? Dad-less has a right to any and all of above. There's no right or wrong here. There's only the possibility to move forward.
Love Y'all!!!

Brad said...

I could have written this post. This is what my dad did to me. Exactly.

He lives here in the same town. The number of times I've met him I could count on one hand. He says he loves me but any contact is always from my effort, never his. I can forgive him because he is a broken person. How he got broke isn't my fault. I can accept that he is damaged. I accept that I will probabally go to his funeral and that will be the end of it. It still hurts.

Yes, my mother broke his heart but he was the adult. He shouldn't have broken mine. This is a big part of who I am and what I'm like, I can't change that. I can accept that I'm damaged too and try and not let that damage hurt anyone else. Thank you for writing this. - I love you - B

Susan's Snippets said...

CB - Wow! My sister recently said to me "Pray to God and ask Him to reveal what your issue is with men." I immediately replied "I already know - the word in GIANT letters in my mind is DISAPPOINTING!"

Now that doesn't mean that I have to lash out at ALL men, even the nice ones...I just am a little more guarded than the average jane and I try to direct any negative thoughts about men to the men that are deserved of them (my father and my ex-husband), I have the thought and then give it up.

It works....otherwise you will be angry at men in your life that don't deserve it.

I am sending positive thoughts and smiles.

along the miles

The Window Watcher said...

?Grudges...easy to carry...harder to handle as the years go by.
You know why.
We'll talk of it.

Anonymous said...

I feel almost embarrassed to offer any advice here because I have a wonderful relationship with my parents but here goes....

You have asked a lot of questions here E, mostly of yourself. If it were me, I would take those questions to the one person who might be able to answer them for you. You took the trouble to seek him out, you must've wanted to find him in your heart.

I would take the bull by the horns and meet up with him. Ask him the things you want to know. Ask him before it's too late and you don't get the chance. You may even be surprised by some of the answers but the one thing you will know is that you tried. You did your best and you tried.

Happy New Year sweetheart, to you and your beautiful family.

Portia said...

Well. I have quite a lot to say but I'll try to be succinct. Here I see some soul searching similar to some I have done. And am doing. It goes on and on doesn't it? I find the whole forgive/forget process excruciatingly difficult. But I also have nothing but compassion in my heart for those broken people. It's hard. But it's going to be ok:)

I'm sorry I never thanked you for the most precious Christmas card I have ever seen!! It is beautiful and still propped proudly on our counter:)

I hope the PAM ordeal for this month is good and over and you find some relief next time! It sounds just awful:( If you ever want to call and vent feel free:)

One more thing. That Scandanavian flush- Jacob gets it on his cheeks all winter long. It's pretty cute as long as it's not all chapped and hurting.

HAPPY NEW YEAR to all in Crustyville!!

Kelly Jene said...

I'm trying to wrestle with the fact that my oldest son's dad just dropped out of his life... no notice, no warning, no reason. I'm so angry, so incredibly furious for my son. I don't know how to deal with it.

I love you.

Thank you for the extra beefy box. Roggie went wild over it. :)

Love you always...

Martha said...

I'm behind on reading blogs and just read this heart is aching a little bit. I know I hold grudges. I know I shouldn't but I still do. I can freeze people out of my life completely, though it's typically because of something that has gone against a deep, moral grain. I think it comes down to how much each of us is equipped to handle. I hope you find some peace.

jAMiE said...

I don't know what to say about your post..i'm sure you'll figure it out though...but i hope you have a very Happy and Healthy New Year Crusty!

Dear Liza said...

Oh honey....

Could be me, that you wrote about. Could be many of us, I think. Each of us finds our own way.

If you are asking...then I want to tell you this: Forgivness is so much better for YOU. For YOU. It is so freeing...

Love you. REALLY.


Anonymous said...

i struggle with forgiveness too. for myself. my family.

i wish you the best and hope you can let go of some of the hurt.