Sunday, June 19, 2011

Dear Dad

Dear Dad,
Another Father’s Day.  Just another day on the calendar for me. Guess you never realized how much I hated this day when I was a kid.  It’s been years since you’ve been gone, but you had disappeared from my life a long time before the cancer claimed you.  I wish I could resign myself to that loss but time hasn’t diminished the pain, taken away the bitterness, or made me less angry.  I will never understand what it was that kept you from being a part of my life (those 2 days when you showed up with a girl friend not much older than me don’t count).  You have no idea about the emptiness – no clue about the lies I told myself to make it through those tough parts of life when I was truly alone.  No comprehension of the scars that are still there.  I am proud that everything I had to know I learned on my own, but it would have been nice to have had some guidance about things like courage, integrity, and strength.  Even better to have learned how to be a man instead of figuring it out on my own, looking for any kind of role model I could find to fill the void you left.  I haven’t always been a perfect father myself but I’ve been there for my kids (your grandkids by the way), and they know that my love is unconditional and will never have to wonder about that.  They will never have that huge, sucking hole in their hearts that you left me with.  I will never understand what it is about some men that makes them abandon their children – maybe it’s because you lack character.  Or values.  Or maybe, in the words and language of the characters I write, you were really “just a piece of shit.”
          I think some times that’s closer to the truth.
          So, today, if you’re up there in heaven looking down (although I believe there’s a special place in hell for a guy like you), I want you to know that the anger and pain you left me with has driven me to succeed.  To be different.  To be better than you.  To be nothing like you.  And if we meet again in the afterlife, just pretend you don’t know me……because let’s face it, you never really did.
          Thanks Dad.


  1. I hope this was healing for you. A lot of my writing was at one time. I often wondered how many of writers get strength from letting it all out. HAPPY FATHERS DAY TO YOU, KEVIN.

    Jeanette Cheezum

  2. Pretty sad Kevin. Take comfort in the fact that as a father you are important to your kids. My advice would be to let the anger go. I know, easy for me to say.

    Catch a wave and you're sittin' on top of the world. Happy Pop's Day!

  3. Kevin, I wish every father who thinks his job is done when he deposits his sperm could read your story. And I am so glad that you did not follow your father's rotten example. You were unfortunate, but your kids are very fortunate. Now, I hope you can follow Harry's excellent advice and "let the anger go." It's difficult, but not impossible. Trust me, I know.

  4. I could never understand how a parent could just abandon their child and not be a part of their life. From them moment each of my childern were born, all three of them, I know that I could never walk away from them. I have always been there for them and make them a part of what I do. It's just to important to them and also me. You have done a great job with you kids, your a good Dad. Bruce

  5. Touche'! Unfortunately, I believe this resonates for an enormous amount of people. There are too many empty wounded out there due to a single self-absorbed, hateful, hurtful person in their lives. And it doesn't have to be an absent father either. I often wondered if it wasn't better after my father "disowned" us all - as if our crippled bodies vaporized into the ethers for his convenience. Because when he was present it was a vicious, bloody, terrifying horror and you just lived holding your breath wondering when the next carnage was coming. There are two kinds of from the father that leaves and another from the one who won't. --Cat

  6. Killer and powerful, Kevin... A brave write for sure.

  7. Thanks everyone - really appreciate you taking the time to read this post, and more than that, I'm grateful for your comments and thoughts. Sometimes you have to bury the past.....but it helps when you can stick a knife right through its heart first before kicking dirt on the corpse.