As I write this post I’m feeling a little sorry for myself. It’s my Father’s birthday today and it leaves me feeling a little weepy. Unlike most families where this would be a cause for celebration in our house it’s a bit of a non event. I don’t even know how old he is.
He left when I was 5 and I’m now 43. In the interim years I’ve seen him a handful of times, holidayed with him a few times and exchanged some emails and phone calls.
We are not close. Since I’ve had children of my own he has made more effort to keep in touch but it feels like hard work for both of us.
I can’t forget his absences when I was a child. I feel like I’m in mourning for the father I wish I had had. And on top of that he’s told me things about my parents and their marriage I wish he had never disclosed.
As an adult and a parent I can make allowances for him. I can say he did his best even if that does feel sadly lacking.
When I look back over my life from my first relationship with a 23 year old when I was 17 it’s obvious I’ve always been searching for that elusive father figure. For that sense of approval from a masculine presence. I’m fortunate that I’m not bereft in that regard. I have a loving husband, and God who is my Father.
My feelings towards my Dad have changed over the years. From not knowing whether I would care if he were to die to being grateful for the efforts he does make we’ve come a long way.
However it’s still painful and it still doesn’t come easily but I celebrate him because that’s the right biblical thing to do, to honour him, because he’s still my Father. And so I take these baby steps in the hope that one day we will have a relationship worth celebrating.
Happy Birthday Dad xx