I know you don’t get it. We settled that a long time ago. That night in the banal, suburban resturant where the waitress hovered nervously as I sobbed into the linen and you asked me what I needed a father for anyway.
I don’t want so much any more. I don’t pine. But it’s still surprising to me. How disconnected you are from this role you have. Father. One part biology (eyes, nose, laugh; all yours), one part psychology (pass me the textbook, baby, I’m in it!), one part the revolving mystery of parenthood (teacher, comforter, protector).
And there’s a part of me that knows. Your own was lacking. Removed. Selfish. My fagile, shy heart so ready to forgive, to understand. But instead I must be hard. Must be grown up. Must be careful what I wish for. I wonder if this uneasy truce we’ve reached will ever deepen, resolve, heal. I miss you. I still wish…
So dad, when I call, try a little harder, ok? To let me know you’re glad I called. To let me know you where wondering if I would. That this tacky thing called “Father’s Day” registers with you. That it resonates in a part of you that calls itself Pa.
I love you.