NOTE: I actually wrote this blog on Sunday night, but I didn't want to publish it until I warned my mom that it would be there. Once I got the go-ahead, I decided to include it on my blog because I did feel a lot better after writing it. So here it is:
I'm having one of those nights. I'm sure you know the kind. I have plenty of things I could be doing, but I can't think of anything that I actually want to do. So instead of doing one of the many things that need to get done, I'm just sitting here feeling sorry for myself. My thinking is that maybe if I type it out, I will start to feel better. Nothing has actually gone badly today. In fact, other than being tired, I am probably just in a bad mood because I have been harping on old issues today. My number one bother at this moment is my father. I haven't talked to him in months (March, maybe). I don't give it much thought on most days, but when I am in this kind of mood, thoughts of it constantly nag at me. The main reason we don't talk anymore is because he called and left a voicemail on my cell phone saying that if I wasn't going to call him more often or answer any of his phone calls (which he conveniently made when he knew I was at work), then I could just "have a nice life." The thing you should know is that my dad and I used to be very close. We used to go to Tides' games and college basketball games together all the time. We would have great conversations. When I was in high school, my dad was working nights, but I would call him every Tuesday and Friday night to tell him the scores of my basketball games or to keep him posted on the race for the home run record between Sammy Sosa and Mark McGuire. He was a fabulous builder, and he was constantly making things for our house; things that I have in my house to this day. It was his goal every Christmas to give my sister and me the best presents possible, whether they were cameras, a Mike Piazza jersey, or even my wonderful dog, Sampras. One time, we went to a Tides' game because they had advertised that they were giving out Piazza bobble heads. When we got there, they were only giving the collectibles to kids. Knowing I was disappointed, my dad went home and ordered me a much nicer bobble head off of eBay. That was just the kind of guy he was. He would tell me he loved me any time he was leaving the house or hanging up the phone, and I never had any reason to doubt him. I guess that is why it is so hard to believe that we don't talk at all anymore. My dad has no idea where I live or what my home phone number is, and I doubt that he cares most days. He has a classic case of a mid-life crisis, although he would never admit to that. It is amazing how much he has changed from the person he used to be. He is like a total stranger to me and my sister. The clean-cut man who always cared about his appearance has long greasy hair and wears nasty t-shirts and dirty jeans everywhere now. The man who used to be able to give everyone advice on the moral way to handle things can no longer be counted on to make moral decisions at all. So while it does bother me to have no kind of relationship with my father, I know it is much easier to not deal with him. When I was still talking to him, the conversations were very forced and shallow. For a week afterward, I would be upset and harping on things he had said that upset me. So why do I let it bother me at all? Well, I am one of those people who can't help but think "what if?". You know what I mean. What if something happens to him and we left things like this? What will it be like when I find that special person and I don't have my dad to walk me down the aisle? What if he isn't at my wedding at all? What if I run into him five years from now and I'm married with children that he doesn't even know? I know that that is all way down the road, but I still think about it. The truth is that only one person has ever broken my heart, and it was my father. I can still see him looking me in the eyes and lying to my face. It really makes it hard to trust anyone. Still, trying to be the positive, happy person that all my friends claim I am, I try to look at the bright side of things. All of this happening has taught me many valuable lessons. I am certainly less naive than I used to be about "white picket fences" and "happily ever afters." Don't get me wrong, I still want to find love, I just don't think I'll go into it as blindly as I would have before. Other good things to come out of all of this: I have much closer relationships with my mom and my sister, and I learned that true friends are the ones who will rush over and drive you around for hours while you cry (thank you Sarah) and who will let you crash their football party because you just don't want to go home (thank you Carolyn). In the end, I know that my faith will get me through all of this, even days like today. Things work out the way that they are intended to. One day, we may understand things that we don't at this time, but everything happens for a reason. While I know that things will never be the same between my father and me, I still have hope that we can have some kind of relationship in the future. In the meantime, I will just count my blessings that I have a wonderful mother and sister and wonderful friends. I will also consider myself lucky because I had a wonderful father for 22 years.