To live with a dream and a nightmare at the same time is the story of my relationship with my dad. Forgiving him is another story.
Forgiving My Dad
Explaining my life with my dad is like trying to tell you a story of two different humans that impacted my life. Growing up my dad literally was everything I wanted to be and more. He inspired me to be a better daughter, sister, friend and overall person. From passing down his love for music and writing to teaching me what I know about serving others with love and passion. Specifically when cooking, our family was very spoiled with really good food since he also was a chef. My dad did it all and strived to do it with excellence. He also had very strong morals and values and took his time to teach me how to make wise decisions in everyday life. He was a minister and an assistant pastor at one point, so almost daily he’d have a one on one with me about the meaning of life. It was normal for me to have a dad that was very intentional about all he did with his children everyday.
But like I said there is another side to this coin I cherished so much. The other part was tainted and even scary at times. It was the part that made forgiving difficult.
The Imperfect Stranger
As a child he was very hard on us. So his strengths of doing things with excellence overflowed onto us in not the best way. He didn’t accept anything less than perfect. So it came with a price when you didn’t live up to his expectations. You could be having the time of your life with your dad making pancakes and dancing in the kitchen one moment. The next day he may find out you messed up in school and he’d get very angry. It even got to the point of severely physically discipling us for the smallest things that he didn’t agree with. He would psychologically manipulate us to do or be what he wanted us to be.
So it was confusing to know when we were truly loved or just abused.
He was so involved mentally, emotionally and even spiritually in our life that he had us wrapped around his finger. But if he felt he didn’t for just a moment, you’d get treated like his worse enemy. Beaten, isolated, and psychologically abused. He’d take back everything he gave and won’t give it back until you showed you deserved it. So once things settled and you learned your lesson it was all back to “normal.”
Trying to write about forgiving my dad can be confusing with both pain and beauty… A Hero dad and a unrecognizable stranger.
Finally, the confusion kind of ceased when my high moral, creative, full of life dad chose a side of that coin I mentioned before. When he no longer could control or hide the imperfect side of him from others he turned to drugs. Ever since then he never was there for us as a present dad again.
He tried his hardest to hold on to us and be a good father but the pain that had him be hard on us at times was actually the hardest on him. Till this day, over 15 years later; he has not been able to come back home and make us laugh till our ribs ached. I’ve written so many stories and songs like he use to that I have not yet been able to share with the one that inspired it all. But I’m so grateful that God gave me the memories of his good efforts to stay with me.
There is no perfect father or human for that matter.
Even when he was out of our lives I can recall a time he came back when he was clean for little a while. My mom was not as affectionate as my dad so though he left us I was very happy to see him back. There was a night that I was suffering from very painful cramps I would always get as a teenager. He found me in a dark room crying and trying not to be a burden to anyone and waiting for it to pass. He asked me to come out and head to the bathroom; to my surprise my hero dad that I remember made a small come back when I saw he had already drew me a bath and made me something special to eat after. It definitely does not excuse the pain he caused to us but I’ve learned to forgive him and let go of the pain.
Now that I’m a mother, I see that it’s not that easy to be everything for our children especially when we are still broken ourselves. You only can give what you have.
Healed people heal other people. So hurt people only know to give hurt, intentional or not.
My father went as far as he could to love us till his hurt outweighed the love.
Forgiving and letting go
This story of forgiving is real and painful but I had to let go my past and pain to the one that can handle it. Since I have given it to God; I have been able to talk and share parts of the nightmares I’ve lived in my childhood that has haunted me through my adult life.
If this story resonates in any way with you. I pray for healing and full freedom in your precious life. We cannot change our past but it doesn’t have to follow and haunt us in our present and future lives.
With that said; I Thank you dad for giving the little bit of love you had in you to us when you could. I love and forgive you and learned from both the pain and beauty.
Read More Here: TRUE LOVE EMPOWERS YOU