By the time I was 1-year-old my parents were divorced. By the time I was 12 I fully understood that my “father” was lacking in many if not all fatherly responsibilities. The fact that we had to move to a much smaller house, or the fact that we only saw him sometimes or maybe it was the lack of birthday presents, or the fact that they both played the “what did you, (fill in parent here crap) or, or, or…….
I did not see him much growing up and even less (if at all between 12 and 22, do not really remember ). I was very angry I can openly admit it. We went without a lot. Unlike today, divorced parents were not the norm then so it was rough in school. Oh, and it was 12 years of Catholic school, (they were even less accepting of the divorce concept.)
I could whine further about the different difficulties growing up but who cares. For the most part I have lived with a belief of using all experiences to build character. I am the strong person that I am because instead of dwelling on my shitty childhood I used it to make me stronger. With that said, I had absolutely no relationship with my father after roughly 12 years old..zip, nada none!
The only reason I saw him at 22 was because he was at my sister’s wedding for a few minutes but we did not speak. She has now been divorced much longer than she was ever married, and the sarcastic side of me wonders, could he have been the bad luck?
So, over the years my siblings have had on and off relationships with the man which is within their rights. I have had no interest. When Megan was born a message was relayed that he would like to meet her….my answer was along the line of F— You !
My girls are getting older, asking questions. I have never lied to my girls about anything. My mother died in 2002 of metastasized breast cancer. Franks parents both died while he was in college, his mother of the same as mine and his father of a massive heart attack. My girls until about a year ago believed all of their grandparents were dead.I beliveve it was Madison who was the first to ever pose the question about my father. She was the first who realized we never specifically mentioned my father. Once asked, Is your daddy alive, I had no choice but to answer “yes”.
Many questions came with that “yes” answer. Why have we never met him? Why was he not around for you like our daddy? There are no good answers for any questions posed on this subject tossed from a 6 or 8-year-old. I thought it would just end this way, two confused girls with questions I would “attempt” to answer either truthfully or not.
And then something happened not too long ago. Not to get to deeply into it, but my grandmother died, his mother. I do not know if it was the passage of year, the lack of others talking in my ear, the thoughts of my own children regretting the chance to meet the only living grandparent they had but I decided to change years of a solid belief stance. I told my brother that if their grandfather wanted to meet them, to let him know my e-mail.
Time for bed so a long story needs to end. After a few e-mails, he was in town…..my father who I have not seen in at least 20 year. Arrangements were made and it was time for my girls to meet the only grandparent they had.
Thursday Night..the big night. I had no real feeling either way to be honest. I expected the worst and hoped for the best. On the other hand, my daughter, especially my little one were so excited. “is this my real grand pop?” she asked? “Yes Madison, the one and only”. This was a real Q&A less than 15 minutes before the knock at the door. I did not tell them until a few hours before the expected meeting. I did not want them to live the disappointment I had for years.
In the end, they had a wonderful time. He was good with the girls and did great with their gifts. The fact that he brought his girlfriend who thinks she knows everything, well was tough on me but such is life. Thankfully my loving husband was around the entire time and took over when I needed to go for a “walk”. His girlfriend was just nonstop talking or the talk about shit she has no idea about OR she truly proved herself to be one of the most truly annoying (or dumb) people I have ever met!
I will leave that there, but will admit that I made the right decision in letting the girls meet their grandfather. Not because I have any different feelings about the man but because how happy they are about meeting some one that they thought did not exist. He watched them dance, watched meg play piano, listened to stories and brought gifts. That is the definition of “grandparent” right?
That is all I have for now..this post has taken way too long! Good night all!