Last week, I found out that my biological dad had been in a coma in the hospital after some kind of altercation. Not surprising news, as he’s always had a pattern of getting himself into these predicaments, but the family was talking about things like taking him off life support and having funeral plans in place.
It hit me hard. I was overwhelmed with mixed emotions. Anger, frustration, sadness, fury, heartbreak, nostalgia, and so on.
The night I found out, I cried in the car ride home. Blasting Kelly Clarkson and Matchbox20, of course. I sobbed and I just felt so raw. I got into bed and just started typing on my iPhone in my Notes.
Here it is. Me, unfiltered. My in-the-moment feelings about the man who is my biological father. Who I hate, but want to love.
How do you say Goodbye when you’ve never even said Hello? How is it fair that somebody can act as a tornado, running through good people’s lives, and just leave, fade out, and disappear, with a path of chaos and wreckage behind them? Why does he have the right to cause pain, frustration, emptiness, and just get to leave it all behind? My dad was jumped/run over by a car/beat up/something I don’t know what, this week. He was in a coma on Thursday, maybe longer. He woke up. My aunt asked him how he wants to go. He shrugged. Because it’s easy to be the mess, to cause the hurt, to create the tears. The ones that get left behind have it hard. We have the unanswered questions, the What Ifs, the Whys. How dare you have this control over my life. How dare you disappear, then have the audacity to suddenly appear, but be dying? You never came back, you never came for me. You never wanted me or cared about the hurt you caused. You just walked away because that’s what cowards do. And now you lay there, innocent and dying. And I have to deal. I have to say goodbye to you but I never even had a chance to say hello. You never saw me graduate. You probably have no idea I’m getting my Masters next month. I bet if my degree were coming in a needle, in a bottle, you’d give half a damn. But you just lay there, unaffected by the tears you’ve put on my face, immune to the sorrow and emptiness we all feel. I’ve failed without you, I’ve succeeded without you. I’ve had my first kiss, my first love, my first heartache, and you were never here. I learned how to drive a car, I got my license, I wrecked my first car, and I got my first brand new car, and you weren’t here to see any of it. I went off to college, met amazing people, became a woman, became an outstanding human being, and if was all no thanks to you. You missed it all. Yet I lay here feeling like I’d give it all up just to feel you love me, to feel you gave a damn about me.
Of course, days later, he slipped away. No longer in the hospital. Don’t know where he is. I imagine next I’ll hear news of him is in a situation not unlike this one. I think I forgive him. But I’m not sure yet. And that’s okay.