To Be or not to be

Labor day has come and gone without much fanfare which was more than fine. Usually the holiday was just a reminder of everybody having more fun than me but this year I did not feel like I was missing out.

My husband had the week off leading up to the long weekend and he encouraged me to treat it as a true vacation. It was bliss to really just be together as a family. Naturally, I miss my mom more than anything and the awkwardness of being in her house without her and knowing she will never come home is subsiding. I am more in love with my husband than ever and not just because he helps me cope with my dad.

I constantly struggle to be with my father. He is my dad. He did change my diapers and come to my school plays (then comment how insignificant my role was and wondered what I did at all of the rehearsals). He has a tally for all of the selfless things he has done as my father and believes that I should be indebted to him because he answered the call of duty, or doodie when I was a baby (Bad pun, sorry.)

But it’s not selfless if I am forever indebted to him. While he remembers every positive thing he has done and has virtually no memory of the negatives or gets hyper defensive when I mention them, he remembers the opposite in others. He can still cite feeling slighted when my brother over a decade ago did not spend time with him because he chose to be with his girlfriend. Now my dad will have some greater explanation on why this is, our cousin was in town and blah blah. And in my dad’s memory my brother is completely in the wrong and he, my father remains infallible. It ceases to be fun.

My dad can justify insulting and demeaning his kids. “I didn’t call you an asshole. I said you are acting like an asshole.” Regardless of his word choice, I don’t want to be around that berating.

Yes, I know I’m lucky to have a father who does love me and shows me in his convoluted way and wants to be with me, hence the struggle. I just don’t like putting myself into situations which I know bring out the worst in me. I try not to let it get to me and keep everything in perspective, but I’m a fallible human being.

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