Happy Fathers Day 2010! An odd holiday to get a shout out from me since my dad left much to be desired. I really enjoyed reading all the tributes to the fathers on Twitter and some of my favorite Bloggers gave me big grins with the tributes to their dads. I also saw a lot of pain, anger and bitterness (clothed in sarcasm) flowing on my Twitter timeline, too. I know some people have legitimate reason to be angry at their fathers (if you've read any of my previous postings, you know I know). But I had to let it go.
I made peace with my dad's shortcomings years ago. I will never forget the night. I was trying to make sense out of my crazy emotional life. I had read Adult Children of Alcoholics by Janet G. Woititz. I was doing a lot of introspection about my childhood, my failed marriage and the total loser I picked to live with after hubby. My dad had been deceased for a few years at the time but I thought of him constantly. I wrote a letter to my dad. I poured out all my anger at him and said some things that needed to be said. I also put myself in his shoes and I cried -- hard -- for my daddy. I didn't excuse any of his behavior with his family but I made peace with him. I needed to make that peace for my own sanity.
My wish for this Fathers Day is for those who have or had less than perfect dads (you know who you are) to make peace with your father. Whether your dad was the absent dad, the drunk dad, or the abusive dad, find some way to make peace. I know your pain and I'm not encouraging you to dismiss it, but you've got to work through it and release it. It's not enough to stuff it down, you've got to let it go. I know the desire to have a dad you can turn to for guidance when the world is kicking your ass. For you young ladies, I know the desire of wanting to be daddy's little girl, the one man you know will always love you and support you, to cherish you. I really do get it. I could write a book about it - seriously.
For your own sanity and emotional health you have got to find a way to make peace. Your relationship with your father may not change but speaking from experience, I know you will find a peace in your soul. Now I can speak of my father as a statement of fact -- without that heart wrenching pain that used to consume me. I wish I had taken the opportunity to make peace while he was still alive but I'm so very thankful I was able to make peace anyway.