As some of you know, I’ve embarked on a rather strange journey reuniting with my estranged father, about which I have numerous reservations. Last week, I wrote a very long and intense letter explaining exactly how I felt and, in true 21st century form, I put it on the internet instead of showing my family and friends. (see it here
). I was overwhelmed by the kind words and advice you all poured in and it really helped. A lot. In the end, I considered sending him the long letter, but decided not to. It’s just not my style. I’m not an overtly emotional person. I don’t often explain my feelings. While it may be necessary in this case, and I may regret sending the below email later today when it sinks in, this seemed like the better option. A little tongue and cheek is more my way. So, in the interest of honesty, that’s what I went with.
Thank you to everyone who’s be so nice to me doing this. I was very hesitant about blogging in general, let alone something so private. But, I’ve found this whole process really releasing. Being able to share through anonymity has been a gratifying experience. So, blogosphere, thanks for listening.
I know it’s been a while. So, here’s the deal:
I’m really busy and I have a lot going on. I’m also generally terrible about long distance communications. I hope you understand that it’s not because I’m angry or upset with you (at least, no more than I was… sorry, I have to at least give yousome shit).
I wrote a very long letter to you last week explaining exactly how I feel/don’t feel, but I read it over this morning and it’s a whole lot of words and I’m a minimalist. So, I’m going to summarize.
It’s been a really really long time since we had our little estrangement. And as much as it was difficult and I struggled with it, I struggled through it. I’ve grown up and constructed an entire life that is not based on having a father. I got used to the idea that I may never see you again and—as much as I always wanted to—that I may never see my sisters again. It’s not that I prefer that scenario. It just seemed the most likely case. I have an entire life that you’re not a part of. I have my own problems. I’m a real, whole person.
When you were into this whole reuniting deal, I wasn’t really shocked or upset, but more apathetic. I know you’re not a bad person. I remember you fondly, actually. I know you’re not a bad person, but you were bad to me. And that should mean something. What it means for our future, I don’t know.
As a side note, I’m sure you’d like to justify yourself. Don’t. I’m not interested. It’s not about what happened. If we go forward, we go forward. Not back.
But I’m hesitant. I hate to put it in these terms, but I’m not sure what you’re bringing to my life other than an obligatory, awkward relationship. We’re never going to be the way we used to. There’s always going to be hesitation, tiptoeing. There is the possibility that we could make something new and great, but I’m not sure if that’s how this is going to play out.
But, I could be convinced. If you really want to know me–not just because I’m your estranged daughter, but because I’m someone worth knowing–and you can come up with reasons for that, shoot for goal. But know that I want something meaningful. I don’t want to exchange small talk via email. I do small talk in the office. It doesn’t have to be heavy. It doesn’t have to be emotional–in fact, I would hate that. But I need something meaningful to make this work.
Sorry this ended up being longer than I intended. If you don’t write back, I understand. I know I’m not making this easy for you, but can you blame me? It isn’t that I don’t trust you–please don’t think this is coming from anger or hurt or any of that. It’s just that, like I said, I have this life of mine and it’s already complicated. I’m not sure what the point of this is correspondence, other than to be able to say that I speak to my father from time to time. And I don’t do things just for the sake of doing them. I’m not like that.
But hey, I have a lot friends with great relationships with their fathers. And they seem to think it’s a good deal…
And the email he sent me, to which the above is a response:
Haven’t heard from you in quite some time. Hope all is well.
I guess my photo was too much a shock….. It is to me too.
take care and always thinking about you