Monday, February 01, 2010

Ramblings About My Father...

I knew two things would be asked by my dad before I left visiting them in Texas. They were probably going to be, verbatim:

"So, you and [Babybottoms Dad] thinking about getting married? You even talk about it again after the baby was born?

AND....the one I dreaded more than that:

"So...what are you doing regarding you and the babies spirituality?"

In the mind of Mr.AssertiveWit Sr. (cause that's where the quick, sharp wit comes from), those two sentences might as well been:

"Why aren't you and that nigga married if yall love each other so much?"

AND....even more rude:

"When are you going to start going back to the Kingdom Hall?"

I love both of my parents dearly but I'm at a point in my life where everything seems to be happening too fast to deal with sometimes. Their prodding questions aren't helping. Sometimes I just wish I was 5 years old again and my parents were the imperfect beings I had heralded them to be. It was simple then...they protected me and could do no wrong. Then you grow up and realize you love them more, despite them forgetting that you've grown older, because they're human just like you.

I think the biggest problem between my dad is that he doesn't want us (his children) to see that he has had "fuck up" moments just like us. My brother is having one right now that my dad can't relate to so it's almost like my brother has to go through it alone because my dad isn't real big on empathy. My sister appears to have the most "FU" moments out of all three of us; she's kinda like Michael Jackson...forever chasing her childhood and she'll never catch it. That's my real life Peter Pan. As for me...I've always felt the biggest mistake I could have made was leaving my home and that protection you don't realize you had as a kid from your parents. Even though people look at my life and think I've done pretty okay, I appreciate it but it kills me inside to know I KNEW I could do better...and I didn't.

So when my dad questions parts of my life that I've always guarded, I wonder if he's asking as to feel like he's fulfilling his parental obligations or if he genuinely cares what I'm going through. I want him to understand that he didn't do a bad job raising us even though we all chose 3 different paths then he ever planned for us. Right now, we need him more as a friend than a father.

Sometimes I wonder if he'll ever be the vulnerable father I always wished for. Just once I want him to be okay letting us (his kids) know that he isn't perfect. As long as he appears that way, I think I'll always get those questions like in the beginning of this blog. They aren't questions he wants to hear the answer to but sometimes I think he still looks at me as that 5 year old he needs to protect....

3 points of view:

A.Smith said...

If there is one thing I've promised myself I want to pass on to my kids if I have any, it's how to be vulnerable.

There are so many things I was never taught because my mom wasn't vulnerable. Reality was, she couldn't be, single parents don't have it like that. But damn if I have to work very hard to be vulnerable and I hate every minute of it.

Brittni said...

It took me awhile to realize the deeper meaning behind my mom's regular comment that my dad just "did the best he knew how with" [us]. It seemed so generic and so dismissive...but the older I get, and the more I learn about him, I know it's true. He means well and he loves my brother and I but he sometimes falls short of what we need emotionally.

For so long that angered me, but eventually I just got to a point where I realized he's doing the best with what he's given. I can either accept it or don't...but most importantly, I should learn from it. Whether he's the best dad in the world or not, he's teaching me things to apply to my own parenting skill, and for that I'm thankful.

Hope you and baby had an amazing trip!

AssertiveWit said...

A. Smith: I had to MAKE myself be vulnerable. I had accepted a long time ago that my relationships would only go so far because I HATE for people to see I'm hurt. For one, they don't take me seriously and two, I just feel bootsy afterwards. I can laugh about it now but if it wasn't for Babybottoms dad, I'd probably still be walking around like I had steel for skin.

Brittni: My mom was HELLA emotional while my dad acted like emotions were a sign of weakness. There was no middle ground so it was kind of hard to determine WHAT and HOW to feel about certain things. I didn't really get to a place of balance until I got pregnant with Babybottoms. My emotions were EVERYWHERE and I kind of forced myself to learn what was appropriate for me and those close to me. This kid has "taught" me so much in the last 4 months, I swear!

I just work on having balance in everything I do and it helps when it comes to "moments of vulnerability".

Babybottoms and I had a FANTASTIC trip too...I might write about it :)

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