Sometimes it sneaks up on me, and sometimes it follows me around like a cloud for weeks, but I always think about my father too much at this time of year.
Just when I think am over the dismal reality of the whole thing, of our failed relationship, somehow it always comes up again, and I’m right back there, ticking off all of the rotten stuff he’s done over the years, counting on my fingers as I list off the reasons he is not in my life.
To be honest, even though I always trot out the same atrocities, it is not those things that keep me awake at night. I do think it ‘s terrible that he had my sister sterilized knowing full well that she was signing away her rights without the ability to know what she was doing, but I also know that it was from the best of intentions. He had no right to do such a thing, and it was an incredible violation, but it is not the thing that makes my toes curl in horror when I recount it.
What scares me to my very core is when I think that once upon a time, one day very long ago, my father and my mother were just the same as us, as Erik and me. They were young and in love and living in a tiny house, taking too many pictures and pasting the graph of my mother’s contractions in my baby book. Sometimes I feel like I watch my life, half removed, and it takes my breath away when I think of how my mother and father once sat up late at night talking about their babies and how today, they haven’t spoken in decades, how that baby book they pasted those pictures in has long since been discarded. Life can be one way one minute and an entirely different way thirty years later, and that?
That is what keeps me up at night. To be honest with you.
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