A Father’s Legacy

imagesAs father’s day approaches I think about my relationship with my father.  I speak to my Dad every day. For some reason after my mom passed I took on the responsibility of making sure that he was ok. Even though he remarried, the connection between us changed when my mom died. When I think about my mom I wish that I could speak to her and it is that desire that creates the desire in me to be present with my Dad in ways that I had never imagined.

Don’t get me wrong, it is not always easy to be in contact with him. He is very bright and also, at times, a bit full of himself. His desire has always been to be a benevolent dictator of sorts, and though he has mellowed he still gets annoyed when politics here in the US and abroad don’t go his way.

We have gone through many different seasons in our relationship. Yet as each season passes I learn more about him and more about me. I used to think that to have his love and acceptance was the most important aspect of maintaining a relationship with him. What I have learned is that we can disagree, have different perspectives, get riled up and still find a place of individuality.

Does it mean that wounds of living in a warriors home don’t exist? No, not at all. It means that the wounds of childhood do not have to define who we are now. The relationship that we choose to embody as he ages and I mature is ever changing. It was his warrior that got me in touch with my warrior. Not always good to be in the status of warrior as it can be a lonely place. Yet the warrior can also get us in touch with the part of us that is the Amazon, that is Zeus, or that embodies a power held within the soul.

What wounds, if any,  do you carry within your soul that were caused as a result of your relationship with your father?

How did you overcome the wounds?

What did you learn from the wounds?

I do thank my Dad for giving me a healthy sense of myself as an emerging young woman. I remember at 14 years of age, I was hanging out on the front lawn of our house kissing a boy. My dad stood by the front door and I immediately thought that I was gonna get into a heap of trouble. Instead, when he called me to talk to him, he said, “If you are going to kiss a boy, why don’t you do it in your own home instead of on the lawn” To this day, I remember his words and the intention of his actions. He could have communicated to me that kissing etc was bad, yet instead he normalized the entire situation. I will always love him for that!

Did you have a chance to change the relationship with your father?

As an adult, what tools do you continue to utilize that were taught to you by your father?

What was the best conversation you had with your Dad?

If you could say anything to him right now, what would it be?

No one is perfect. When we are small all we want is a father we can adore. As we age we realize that perfection does not exist and adoration may not be on the available spectrum of choices in that father-child relationship. Our fathers do the best they can with what they were taught. Sometimes they get it right and sometimes they live in their blindness. Whatever your relationship is or was to your father, who you are is response to who he was!

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