Remembering My Dad

As I’m writing this I am sitting in the room where, I can only presume, my dad took his last breaths. There is a new bed for me to sleep on and it definitely is different but I can’t shake the feeling that this is where he most likely left. I haven’t really grieved at all or done much of anything. I think other people are more sad than I am. So right now I feel like remembering my dad for whatever reason.

My dad wasn’t a great person and I’m not suddenly going to pretend that he was after his passing. He did have occasional moments where he was a good father and more where he wasn’t. Both literally and fundamentally we were two different people. Essentially he could never understand who I am or will become and I will never understand who he was. In the time leading up to his death I did my best to distance myself from him in an effort to preserve some memory of him that he wasn’t. I knew the type of man he was and I tried my best to pretend that person wasn’t my father.

As a child you grow up learning from your parents, for better and for worse. You take their ideas and adopt them into your own. It took me a while, and other people telling me so, that some of the things my parents taught me, most of it not on purpose, was wrong. I had an existential crisis after high school where I was forced to confront myself and understand who I was as a person. Unfortunately that person would never be accepted by my parents. I questioned the religion I grew up with and my own sexuality. In some ways I made compromises, taking a bit from both which ultimately made me who I am today the person sitting behind a computer screen writing this out to whomever wishes to read it.

My political, religious and world views changed away from that of my family. As I grew more aware I saw them for the flawed human beings that they were and was forced to accept them but they not me. Knowing this I stayed away from my father as much as I possibly could but I would always get moments or glimpses of reality. As a child you see your parents as giants, towering above you in more ways than just height. My parents are actually fairly short and it didn’t take long for me to surpass their height but they still stayed these near mythical figures only spoken of in hushed tones lest I face their wrath. My dad had an annoying habit of calling me up under the guise of assisting him with something only to find out he was lonely and just wanted to talk. I was annoyed because I was just doing other things but more so because he forced me to face him. The man who I had grown to admire, then fear, then hate, then wished to avoid now laid before me in an emaciated body to which I could only compare it to a skeleton or a starving child. Of course this man was not a child suffering from starvation but someone in his late seventies.

My final moments with him were not with him. Just a month earlier my mom called me up to go visit him in the hospital. I sat by his bed for around an hour, he completely unaware I was even there. I left, for various reasons. Some weeks later my mom called me again and essentially begged me to spend some time at our old home in the room I am now sitting in. Again I was there and he was not, his mind somewhere else I could not and did not want to follow. The last few minutes I was there he believed I wasn’t even in the room but talking to him on the phone. He wished me well, in his own way, expressing how proud he was at my current achievements and handed me the nonexistent phone for me to hang up.

After that I may have thought about him a total of twenty times. Mostly my mom telling me I should come visit and I would make absolutely every excuse to not. In the end the only reason I am here is because I lost my job, because I am losing my current home, is because I lost someone in my life that I felt would become my spouse. When we lose everything all we can do is go back, and back for me is to a home that I desperately never wanted to visit ever again. And now a person that I didn’t want to see or talk to or even acknowledge existed is gone from my life and I don’t know what to do. I don’t have a job to throw myself into, my home is not stable and I can’t rest my head on the lap of someone I care about. I thought I lost so much already and now I lost something I didn’t even realize I could lose.

This has been an unusual experience to say the least. Right now I don’t feel like crying, I don’t feel like laughing, I don’t feel like yelling or screaming. I feel like crawling up into a ball and cradling what little I have left, for fear it will also be taken away from me. I wonder what else I can lose, what else can be taken away from me. Right now it just feels like I’m holding sand and the tighter I grip the more pours out through my fingers. I don’t know what to do or where to go. All I know is I feel more afraid than I ever have. All I know is my dad is gone to a place I don’t know where and I can’t follow.

Currently – 10/29/19 (Class, Relationships, Family)

I keep telling myself “Today is the day I say the truth” but it always gets pushed back for one reason or another. I didn’t necessarily have a good opportunity today either but it was much better. I guess I’m just afraid they’ll answer the way I think they will: reject my feelings towards them because I misunderstood the situation and now I’ve lost a friend because I wanted a partner. Tomorrow, if the stars align and all things go well, I’ll try to put forth that idea. Though the two of us are going to be doing an extra assignment on our day of so that could end up backfiring pretty harshly. Though right now I just feel like I need to say it because if I don’t I’ll never know and I honestly can’t tell which is worse: being rejected or never knowing.

I guess I’m just tired of being alone. Its not really about sex or anything like that, really I just want someone to come home to or to have a person who I know is on my side. Someone who’s going to make me a better person simply by the merit of me wanting to become a better person just for them. Maybe I’m going about this the wrong way but that’s how it feels for me and saying otherwise doesn’t feel honest, not to you or myself. Right now all I want to do is to be accepted by someone and never have to second guess their feelings or actions.

On that same note, my mom texted me during class adamant to get me to come home for dinner. ‘Home’ is three hours away just to get there, thirty bucks worth of gas and reminds me my dad is going to die either this year or the next all while I have a test I have to study for tomorrow. One of the ways she tried to get me to go was by asking about my current diet and whether or not I could eat something. She was being really accepting but we’ve already been through this a few years ago. I said I was going vegan and she launched into a diatribe about how this and that and talked about a lot of weird conspiracy theories she heard on conservative radio talk about how cattle farmers are “really decent people and cows are not hurting the climate!” Needless to say we had a fight about this when the actual part of what I said was “I’m going vegan because I’ve heard there’s a lot of bad stuff going on around, both with the environment and health wise, and can’t eat animal products without having these new pieces of information stuck in my head.”

I’ve never really had a good relationship with my family. We’ve always been combative with each other and I can’t say that I wasn’t partially to blame. However the biggest problem I have is with acceptance. It genuinely doesn’t feel like my parent’s are going to accept my diet, my otherwise sensible lifestyle choices or my sexuality. First and foremost its important that I accept myself otherwise I’m going to live a miserable life and if my parents don’t accept me while I’m alive I’m not going to care all that much. That being said it doesn’t feel great to know that each day you’re living your life you have this thought at the back of your mind reminding you that all you are is denied by those who created you and the less I dwell on those thoughts the better.

Currently – 10/15/19 (Hospital, Class, Relationships)

While I was in the middle of writing a post my brother called me up and asked me to meet him at the emergency room. I drove all that way and my dad was lying in a hospital bed pretty much out of his mind. I can’t really describe the feelings I was having. My dad’s emaciated body just lying out on the bed, cuts on his face, mumbling incoherently, not even aware I was there. I’m not even really sure how to process what happened other than I just left after a while.

I was going to talk about how school was going in the last post so I guess I’ll just cram that in here. I’ve been talking to more people and getting better marks on my assignments which is good. I still have some stuff I need to work on but overall I’m doing pretty well. Getting more comfortable with everything and able to voice my feelings a bit better.

One thing I keep finding on my mind is wondering how others see me. I suppose that’s more of a general kind of thing but ultimately I’m wondering who I should invest more time into. I’m also still a little awkward around people which I definitely want to change as soon as possible. But little by little maybe I’ll find my way.

Currently – 10/14/19 (Confused, Restless, Unsure)

I hesitate to say that anyone likes me because my mind has been so warped throughout my life its nigh impossible for me to accurately gauge someone’s body language towards me. Also I have a poor self image so when I look at myself all I see is the stuff that I perceive as wrong and think others see that in me. There’s a part of me that really hates it when anyone says that “I’m my own biggest critic” because I’m my own biggest critic and I loathe myself. Its not fun or quirky or anything remotely positive. Being your own worst critic is looking at literally every aspect of yourself and just being disgusted.

With that… thing out of the way, I keep getting these weird looks and actions towards me specifically by some of the women in my class. I thought a few liked me but then I pushed that idea out of my head because it was so ridiculous to think that. Now its happening again so I’ve kind of got this whiplash thing going on. My ultimate goal, still, is to treat everyone in this class with respect and not be… well, even weirder. I think right now I should just enjoy being able to talk to people in a nice way as opposed to trying to form a relationship out of this. If it happens, though, then I’m all for it.

Not really sure what to do in multiple situations in my life right now. That’s pretty standard for me but lately there’s been a lot of those situations. My friend isn’t talking to me, there’s the whole relationships at school thing I mentioned, I think my dad is nearing his final days. I honestly just feel like I’m being pushed and pulled in multiple directions all at once when I really just want to sit and take a breather. Not only that but there’s so much going on that is affecting other parts of my life and I can’t just talk to anyone about this stuff because this stuff is affecting those parts in my life. Its a really weird circle going on right now.

I’d really like to go camping right now. Nothing really heavy just sit in a forest setting, surrounded by trees and nature. Just to hear the sounds of the Earth around me. I like in a pretty rural neighborhood so on a daily basis, and even right now, all I hear is cars passing by. Its even worse at night because sometimes people will have drag races nearby, cars honking at each other and occasionally a train will go by and blare its horn during the time I want to sleep. I want silence, peace, calmness. I want to hear what its like to be a human again, an organism that is just so lucky to be alive on this planet right now.

Currently – 10/11/19 (Family, Money, Diet)

Continuing the tales of my dad calling me in a drug fueled haze, completely unaware of his surroundings trying to get me to do inane tasks for him believing I’m nearby when I’m actually over 100 miles away and in a different county then my mom is forced to correct him and I’ve just wasted a few minutes and my patience is just a bit thinner. There’s probably a better way to word that but I feel like I need to properly voice how annoyed I am by all of this. Not only did I get a call last night, right as I was making dinner and my dad decided to share some disgusting and weird details, but also today.

If I’m being completely honest I think my dad is nearing death right now and I honestly don’t really care. That seems cold and monstrous but he wasn’t a good dad and we were never close. He’s only recently tried to connect with me, despite the two of us spending years together in the same home, specifically because he’s dying (although I know he won’t admit that). These past few years have just been an absolute drain, the final dragged out woes of a dying man desperately trying to make up for the wrong doing he did to me as a kid with small and pathetic gestures. I won’t be happy when he dies and I don’t think I’ll be sad. I’ll simply accept it and try to move on with my life using him as a constant reminder of the type of father I will never be.

Alright, just felt like I needed to get that out of the way and off my chest. In terms of my day it was okay. I got a check from my job and felt a need to spend some, seeing as how I have enough money to pay off my bills when that need arises. I bought some cook books because I want to just be healthier in general, also a book on making kombucha which I’ve been interested in for a while. I also bought some small groceries in preparation to make some healthier lunches to eat at school as well as finally the wrist watch I’ve been meaning to get for a long time.

If I’m being honest I don’t think the exercise is going too well. It might be because I’m not doing it frequently enough, not enough in general or I’m just too fat so my folds (for lack of a better term) are just getting in the way of a proper work out. I’m absolutely not going to quit but I need to make more changes than doing a few reps every single day which is why I’ve put some effort into, hopefully, trying to make better food for myself. Eating delicious food is always great but I can eat well and good food while also making it healthier for me.

I should really do some research on alternative diets and such. I’ve been watching a few videos on intermittent fasting and that seems like something I’m already doing but need to maximize how I’m doing it. Essentially what I’ll do is on the weekdays eat lunch and dinner but on the weekends its kind of random. I feel like if I cut out snacking and really tighten down the window that I eat my, now healthier, food I could drastically improve my quality of life. Time will tell but, if all goes well, I’ll be a bit leaner and maybe healthier in general. Now I just need to find a workout that’s perfect for me…

Currently – 10/9/19 (Social, Family, Exercise)

For once I… actually had a not great day at class. I’m not sure why, everything was going well. I guess I just started to feel left out near the end of the day for a superficial reason that doesn’t really warrant mentioning. I kind of just felt this deep loneliness well up inside of me, despite being around other people who wanted me to talk. Maybe its just a chemical problem in my brain or something. I don’t know.

Further pushing the bad part of the day in my dad called me out of nowhere, during the class, just to ramble on about some dumb stuff. Talking about how I sounded angry on the phone yesterday or something. As he was talking I could hear his face was swelled up, like his mouth just couldn’t form words properly. Not wanting the conversation to go on for any longer than it had to I just placated him, saying I wasn’t trying to hang up as quickly as possible. I was mad, actually. He called me yesterday in a concealed effort to snipe at me and call me out for perceived laziness.

A few hours later my mom called me up to ‘check up’ on me as well. She explained my dad was just completely out of it mentally and I could hear him on the other end as she yelled out what I was saying all the while I was trying to forget about the day and relax for a bit. This annoyance with my parents may seem unusual or even cruel considering my dad is basically on his death bed with cancer but I’m not going to go into too much detail. Basically they’ve been doing this stuff all my life and, even now nearly pushing 30, I can’t escape from them treating me like a child. It was annoying when I was a teenager when they did this which told me they had no faith in me, now its degrading and just brings back old memories. I can’t help but feel they stunted my growth which has lead to me today being socially inept, single and about as sexually knowledgeable as an average teenager.

So I guess I want to channel these feelings into something more productive. Before it was food and video games now its… well its still food and video games but maybe lets fit some exercise into it. I keep catching a glimpse of myself in the mirror and immediately disliking everything I see. I don’t really want to be ripped but I really just want to tone everything down to a point where if I took off my shirt I wouldn’t be embarrassed. I looked up some videos on how to tighten up my core, and now my recommendations have been pushing even more stuff on me. I found some pretty rigorous things online that I’ve been doing every morning, afternoon and night and I actually feel really good and have seen some decent results in just a few days. Hopefully I can keep up with this.

Currently – 10/8/19 (Work, Test, Friend)

Had a pretty decent day at class today. Seems like things will be ramping up pretty soon so I’ve got to give it my best. Talked with some more classmates. Every day I’m feeling a little more and more relaxed. I even walk up to people and talk to them, which is kind of a feat for me. I really hope I can continue to be a little more sociable.

I’ve got a test I need to study for tomorrow and it seems like it might be a little hard for me. I keep getting decent scores on the tests so I don’t know. Maybe I just know some of this stuff already? In any case I really have to study for this one, and I have… a little bit anyways. I still keep doing things like watching tv shows and lazing about but I have done some studying and I’ll do some more so at least I’m not being completely terrible.

Tonight was family night and I was already going to use the test as an excuse as to why I wasn’t going. They made it sound especially annoying, asking me to drive like fifty miles just so I could be around their bickering and generally bad behavior. Of course I kept getting those backhanded questions making it sound like I was just skipping out and using this as an excuse, which I am but that doesn’t mean I like being called out for it. I wish they’d just trust me once and a while. I know that my mom is going to burst through my door unannounced and just berate me because I was taking a break from studying and then just waste my time with inane stuff.

Haven’t heard from my friend in a while but it seems like she’s not really in a good place. I’d really like to help her out but I’m not sure she even wants to speak to me. I think I’ll try calling her on Friday, if only to check in. Ultimately its up to her and I just want her to feel better. I just want to be there to support her as much as possible. I don’t think right now is the right time to go and visit her so I’ll just keep saving up money for when the day comes.