Your worst fears were true
June 23, 2021 § Leave a comment
My Words on Father’s Day 2021
You didn’t know that your worst fears were true,
that your children did not love you.
When you declined into dementia, they turned their backs, pivoted and
walked away. It seemed easy for them to do. You knew that your four children, now adults, often could not tell you what they were thinking or feeling instead they would lash out in inappropriate anger or frustration. It kept you at a distance and would catch you off-guard as to how to respond.
After reconciling with my Dad when I was 40 years old, you knew that my dad would hold my hand at every opportunity, softly kiss me on the lips and always call me baby. He had no words and feeling the warmth of his hand in mine, had to be enough for me. This was our connection.
You went to a therapist for many years to learn how to be a post-divorce Dad and took notes for future telephone conversations with your family. You were armed, you had words.
You refused to engage in divorce warfare when you separated but nevertheless they were told purposeful lies by their mother hoping that they would love her more. You clung to your truth and admirably, you never stopped trying to speak to their hearts.
You were a warm and loving Dad, always reaching out to chilly reception. Your face would light up if they called or returned your call. Always interested in what they had to say, trying to engage in open conversation, loving every description you heard of a grandchild action or event.
Their hearts held grievances from long ago that we could not heal.
You lost cognition before you could know that the Dad strands were indeed fragile ones. You left me to bear witness as they lined up to receive their inheritance. I feel the pain and disappointment over how it turned out. I know the depth of your capacity to love, your power to change and this wasn’t your script.