Saturday, November 6, 2010

24 Hours of Emotions

So many thoughts have been scrambling through my brain I had to sit and write them down. What a day it has been!

Today was an intersting day of emotions. There was a brief health scare (everything is fine) with my Dad Brent . My mind started to work in the way it always does - being nervous and neurotic. I tried to tell myself that everything would be fine as all points indicated, but my well, my mind I guess you could say has a mind of it's own!

The three of us girls have an emotional stake in our father. Obviously there are similarities in what those stakes are but their are differences too. Each of us has had a different experience with him . For me personally, everything is new and a health scare for me is frightening in that I want every minute, day, month and year I can have with my father.

It made me think of so many things today. I thought of my own dad and the day I found out he had a heart attack at just 49 years old. I was 1 week shy of my 17th birthday with a two week old son. My life had been turned upside down by motherhood and then we got the call. My dad was sick, very sick. My mother and my aunt Carolyn went to the hospital. I stayed home with my 2 week old son- alone and scared.

Although the phone call Teisha received while we spoke was not quite so severe, it jolted back these memories for me. Teisha, trying to be the big sister told me not to worry. Too late, I heard it in her voice, her own worry, and I lost it. I hung up the phone and thought about those years , almost 21 years ago now, and I broke down. It took me so long to find courage to find him, he couldn't possibly be ill enough to be taken from me could he? I spoke to Diana and felt more secure but I couldn't shake the fear. Maybe, if I'm honest, I'll never lose the fear. Most people in life lose one father. By opening my heart to Brent I will someday have to lose two.

Other thoughts ran through my head. I had emailed my father the first time in June of this year. It is amazing how my relationship with him has evolved. I wrote in an earlier posting at how quickly I came to accept him and love him. Tonight I have thought about the reverse situation and tried to put myself in his place. Tried to think of him opening that email with my declaration, "I am your daughter". I thought of him sitting at his desk pouring over the words that I wrote. Remember , I had so many years to conjure up images of him in my mind. To twist scenarios of what might be if him and I met. He had the 30 seconds of time it took for him to read my email.

For me, those first few phone conversations had me feeling good about my Dad. The meeting at my house sealed the deal. After 4 hours he left my house. Tony looked at me and said "What do you think?" I replied with honesty " I know I can love him." Tonight I thought of him driving away from house, a man with a new grown daughter and 4 grandsons. I had spent so much time thinking of my feelings about him that I never put myself in his shoes. Truthfully, now that I do I can't help but admire him more for taking us all on.

I wondered that night after our first meeting if it would be difficult for him to accept me as his daughter. He did not have 9 months to nurture me and feel me like my mother. In fact as I said, he knew nothing of me being on this earth. I thought about it from his perspecitve, a 37 year old grown daughter coming into his life with no warning. Sure, I thought after that night that we would know one another, share bits of our lives and such. But I wondered as he drove away, could he ever truely feel love for me like his other girls? With my mother, I never feared, wondered or worried about her loving me. Its as if those nine months she had with me before my birth that she had infused her love with me. I didn't have to fear. A mother does not stop loving her child because they are not with them.

Today for me was a testament of this love. The heartache I felt thinking of anything being seriously wrong with him tells me where my heart lies. It gave me a chance to share sorrow with my sisters, not something I want, but something that bonds us together. I felt pity for myself last night, not wanting to be robbed of a father after finally opening my heart to accepting him as such. Perhaps I would have still overreacted if I'd met him 10 years ago, maybe I would not have. This regret is something I will deal with for my lifetime, hopefully in lesser quantities as time passes.

Tonight my heart rests with peace that I have a healthy father and more time to bond with him. I can not wish for any better news than this.

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