Today, Father's Day, is often a day of seclusion for me... I'll send out the usual greetings, thank yous, and well, if someone has helped me, I'll say something.
But it's a painful day, too... so much was lost 16 years ago, a source of energy, humor and get-up-and-go, don't let the bastards get you down- chin up in the face of pain stubbornness. That can never be replaced.
So, while I thank my brother, 10 years my senior for stepping into the shoes of a father-figure on occasion, I do not like knowing that in his eyes, I am still a child- who apparently needs a dose of atheism and nihilism, to forget faith, and become a hardened and faithless adult. I can't allow that, and I don't like him trying to make decisions for me.
I am 28. I have had my hard knocks. Two miscarriages, three losses, that knocked me for a loop... I've screwed up, and learned some good lessons from that. I don't need, when calling mom, who as a single parent for 16 years, also gets a father's day message from me...to know that he has plans for me...to move me too close when frankly, much as I love my family, abstinence tends to make my heart grow fonder. I and only I will make big decisions pertaining to my life. My mistakes are mine and I own them. As I own me. I will make it in this world by dint of my own power, and by growing-by learning. I am not perhaps what is wanted of me, but I cannot be anyone else.
I don't like confrontation, and I will shudder in fear of it...until it gets to be too much and I snap.
I am getting better. I don't dream of the miscarriages anymore- I don't often think about them at the front of my mind anymore. On days where I learn that apparently, in Utah, a miscarriage might land you an accusation of murder, or someone rather stupidly decides to wish people a "Happy International Baby Loss Day", I will snap and suddenly bear teeth, but I am not crying at the drop of a hat anymore.
I am building a life here... some mistakes were made, some things said that unfortunately touched the wrong person. BUT... I feel safer. Not safe. Safer. I have people I can hold onto when I need it. Who give me the strength when I am scared. I will learn to say "Something is wrong" at the appropriate times, not let things fester. I don't think of a lot of things at the front of my mind that used to trigger me anymore. Only occasionally will they come forward, and I will fight those demons tooth and nail too.
And I will put my foot down: I am strong. I am an adult. I have my needs, they are different from yours, but, I can take care of myself. I will grow, and goddamn it, I will live. On MY terms. I love you, but what you think is in my best interests (God, I hate that phrase) and what is right are two separate things. I have the responsibility to know myself, to love myself, to fight for what's right, and to make my own life...and while I occasionally feel like I live in between two worlds in a sort of purgatory, or that life is walking a tight rope over hot lava, I will make it. ON MY TERMS.
I may have sensory issues, I may not hear like everyone else, but I am no little innocent in need of pampering. I am my own human with a big wide world to figure out.