Friday, May 17, 2013

To Dad, With Love

May 16, 2013

To Dad, With Love:

I pulled the oldest out of school today.  We needed to do something different.  I needed to do something different.  I’ve been stuck in a depressive rut for the last, I don’t know-months.  I’m crabby times 100; I’m walking through days on the edge of insanity; I’m nearing a nervous breakdown; a powder keg primed and itching to blow.  (Sorry…I don’t know how else to write it except with that rubbish).  Today was the day because last night was the night.  Last night I blew over nothing.  I yelled at her and she cried.  She panicked, would have done anything to please me and make it stop.  It didn’t last long; I was back in control in a minute.  But it will haunt me for a long, long time.  And I know you know what I mean. 

You probably aren’t surprised that this episode reminded me of you.  But I want to tell you that it wasn’t for the reason you may think-I wasn’t ashamed that I had repeated what must be some of your more humiliating episodes.  I thought of you because I understand you.  I’ve been thinking about you a lot lately and this reinforced what I had assumed:  there but for the grace of god go I.  Or rather:  there but for a few small but key circumstances go I.  I’m on two anti-depressants and I acted like a fool.  What could you have done had your illness been addressed?  You were so close to pulling it off.  What could you have done with the freedom I have, the freedom to explore your mind?  You had the suffocating burden of this illness and had to provide for a family.  What would I be now if I was staring down the barrel of a lifetime of that responsibility?  You’ve said you are proud of what I’ve become.  Am I not what you could have been if a few zigs had zagged instead?

Anyway, here I am now, needing to do what you couldn’t.  I need to fix myself before I lose the only things that really matter.  And of course I have what I like to think is a better than fighting chance because I have all those things that you didn’t.  Listen to this now…I’ve said it before and meant it but I REALLY mean it now.  I forgive you.  I know that our past had nothing to do with me and everything to do with you; that you were yelling into the yawning, starving mouth in your soul, “You are a piece of shit!  You are a fraud!  You can’t do this!  You’ll never make it!”  One of the things that makes my situation different than yours is that I know that’s what I’m now yelling and I don’t think you did.  And because I do know that I was able to take the kids out to lunch and say, “Daddy did a terrible thing yesterday.  I scared you and I’m supposed to protect you.  And I’m more sorry than you can possibly imagine.  I want you to know this:  my yelling was about me, not you.  You did nothing wrong.  I did.  And it’s my job to fix it.”


  1. You are an amazing man and father. Self-awareness is the biggest gift we give to our children, and that is just what you did. Breaking cycles and everything... I'm proud of you, my friend.

  2. Wow. Just wow. That is the mark of a great father.

    This is your story. This is where you can find your arc.

  3. Yep, you made me cry again :) You ARE amazing. My father never once apologized for any of the myriad of terrible un-fatherly things he did to us. I hope your children realize what an amazing father they have, I mean they definitely WILL when they are older, but I hope they realize it now. Which is hard for children to do, you know because they are children.

  4. a beautiful reminder of the importance of learning from the past and NOT surrendering to the darkness of our familial illness

    I am blessed to have met you sir~ none among us are perfect parents. It terrifies me so when I open my mouth and my mother's words come out. The difference between them and US is fourfold~ 1. Awareness of the damage untreated illness causes a family 2. The knowledge and POWER that we have to recognize when we are going off the deep end 3. The blessing of being properly medicated and successfully treating this demon within us and 4. being able to recognize when we have hurt the people we love the most.....being able to make amends with words and deeds for having done so.

    It may sound trite~ but I am proud of you.

    Love, light and hope,

  5. I have commented many times tonight under anonymous, that being said I have a feeling you know the comments, I am shocked I just found you ( not in a stalker I want to watch you undress and touch my self kind of way, In an absolutely innocent we have both suffered so terribly and made it through , you stronger and WAY MORE MATURE AND HEALTHY than I.) In the few hours I have learned your existence I have not stopped reading and although not everyone of your posts grabbed me , the ones that did reached me in away I did not think was possible! Thank you Thank you Thank you!!! You are an inspiration, a gift I never thought I would find, You have taught me acceptance , forgiveness, and maturity in a matter of hours that.I never thought possible , I am sure this comment will embarrass you, because It would mortify me and bury me dead in my tracks, and I have yet to even begin to close and forgive as you have! But please do not be embarrassed or ashamed , please be greatfull and keep on moving forward , because as selfish as it is I have soooo much to gain and learn from your experiences! Thank you once more, I am sure I will thank you again I cannot seem to stop reading!

  6. I forgot to explain that the main reason I cannot believe I am just learning of you and your shocking journey is because 95% of the comments left on your posts are bloggers I have been following for quite some time, but found you by accident reading a page I just came acrossed that was posting references to "the truth" and my dirty humor and nosey nature made me click your link ... By the way this blog post was in my 29th Birthday a day up until 6 years ago when I met my husband I never in a thousand years thought I would see ...