As many of you know I am moving in a couple days, back into my dad's home in Wallingford for a couple months just so I can get back on my feet and find a place to live. I'm not gonna lie- this was my stepmom's idea. See my dad and I have always had an interesting relationship. Talking with him about anything outside of the trivial has always been difficult. Anything outside of the realm of work, school, TV, books, movies, or computers and it becomes a long awkward silence punctuated with tears and very few words. When I think about that last statement it makes it hard to believe what I am going to say next - I am excited to live with my dad again, even for a short while.
Growing up my dad was my best friend. We'd play games, he would teach me so many wonderful things. Without him I would have no idea how to conquer the Legend of Zelda. He would do absolutely anything for me, anything. I remember one Christmas I asked for the entire collection of M.A.S.K. figures. I doubt anyone knows what I am talking about, essentially cars that turned into planes driven by guys with superpowered masks fighting crime (Oh how I miss the 80's). Well my dad took a trip to Spokane, a good 3 hours away from our home at the time, a couple times a month until Christmas and bought me these toys. All of them. I can't imagine how much time, dedication and love went into that gift. It was more than the money. And yes this is where I learned that if you love someone you buy them things. I didn't say everything he taught me was GOOD, I just said he taught me things.
Once my parents divorced a few years later, slowly but surely my dad vanished from my life. He wanted to be there, I don't want any of you reading this to think he was a deadbeat dad who ignored his son, he wasn't. He would still send me birthday cards and presents. He always tried to help me realize that he loved me. I knew that he did, but due to some complicated matters that I don't think I will share today, he couldn't be there with me through a lot of the harder times in my life outside of the child support checks. Eventually that's all he became to me were those checks. I couldn't see or talk to him because of my stupid decisions to not help. Again, it wasn't entirely his fault that he wasn't there. I wouldn't let him be there.
Once he was finally able to talk with me again it shocked my system. I wasn't expecting that phone call and when we talked it was always quiet. Very few things were said but that silence spoke enough for the two of us. Slowly we found common ground. We discovered those pointless topics we could talk about without actually saying anything. Occasionally we would try and talk about something real but it never really worked. The time had passed to talk about them. I had decided that they weren't worth discussing when they were important and now they still have too much sting behind them to talk about because we failed when it comes to opening up those channels.
I realize that very little can change in the next couple months to mend these wounds that have done nothing but grow and fester over the last twenty years, but at the same time I have faith that the beginnings of growth and healing can happen this time around. I know there are things I need to say to him and if these lines of communication aren't opened I never will be able to say them.