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Oh, nuts November 13, 2009

Posted by Peeps in Family.

So, I actually had a couple things I could have talked about this week.  Even I’m astonished.  But for some reason, Life decided to intrude.

I was in the kitchen on Tuesday.  I was busy doing something when the phone rang.  It turned out to be a cousin I have no recollection of.  She apparently had a difficult time finding me.  Which is because I generally try to stay under the radar.  She was calling to let me know that my father died last week.

I was not stunned or overwhelmed with grief.  I don’t do much of those under the worst of circumstances.  But I think my cousin was a little shocked at how calm I was.

My father was a really fun guy.  He had all kinds of friends all over the place.  He told great stories, was a fantastic cook, and loved to enjoy himself.  But he was less than stellar as a father.

I remember as a small child how much I loved to spend summers with him.  I could do what I wanted, stay up as late as I wanted and eat stuff I liked.  There were no rules when I was with dad.  When you’re six, this is an awesome thing.  It took me a long time to realize just how bad a thing it could be.

I had no idea why he lived elsewhere.  He left when I was too young to remember.  It just always was that way to me.  But as I got older, my mother would answer one of my questions every once in a while.  Then I started paying more attention.

Some of dad’s friends were not overly nice people.  And sometimes dad wasn’t very nice either.  Small things, I know.  He always spent a lot of time with various women.  Who weren’t supposed to know about each other.

My father once asked me when my birthday was.  That was probably the point when I decided that he wasn’t a really great father.

The last time I saw him was in the mid Eighties, I was in my early twenties.  He wanted me to move in with him, go to school, be his son.  I said no.  It was way too late at that point.

And now he’s gone.  While he was far from being a good father, there were lessons I learned from him, both good and bad.  Mostly, I learned that I didn’t want to be anything like him.  I wanted to be respected, not just well known.  I do everything I can to be reliable, not just the life of the party.

So, even though I don’t really miss him, every day I look in the mirror and see a face that looks remarkably like his.  And know that because of all the things he taught me, I will never be anything like him.  So, I guess I’ll always owe him for that.



1. origamifreak - November 13, 2009

I think it’s a good thing to know what you DON’T want to be.

Sometimes I catch myself acting like my own father and have to take a step back. (I don’t look much like him at all, so there’s no visual reminder.)

Peeps - November 16, 2009

Trying to decide who to be can be difficult. It helps a lot to know who you don’t want to be.

2. Mazco34 - November 13, 2009

I know he passed last week, but I still find it weird (ironic) that your entry is on Friday the 13th.

My condolences to you and your “cousins.”

Peeps - November 16, 2009

That was entirely an accident. If I don’t consult my watch, I never know what the date is.

3. Joanne T Ferguson - November 13, 2009

G’day! Sorry to have read about your father but GREATLY appreciated your extreme honesty…families are not all they are cracked up to be and don’t know ANY families that resemble “Father Knows Best” (Hopefully you remember the series)
As you mentioned, if it’s one thing you can appreciate, it is HOW you have chosen (and how you chose) to live YOUR life…
You can pick your friends, not your family…and (is my personal opinion)…if people just accept things and people (including family) as they are, then the world would be alot happier place…at least you now know who you want to be and how to pick your friends that will appreciate you for you!
P.S. I don’t normally comment on things like this, but your sincere words and message really came through, so thought would share my “Pearls of Wisdom” today with YOU!

Peeps - November 16, 2009

I’m glad you stopped by and we’re always glad for a comment.
There is no such thing as a functional family, as far as I can tell. And yes, it would be much easier if people were more accepting.

4. judy - November 14, 2009

Peeps, I am glad I didn’t miss this read. I think my son was/is in the same kind of boat… waxing back and forth about what a “great, happy, outgoing, everybody loves him (including his 6 wives) kind of guy he was and not the greatest dad in the world. I think you BOTH have turned out very well. Thanks for sharing. I feel it might have been hard to do that. j

Peeps - November 16, 2009

Wow, six wives. I can’t even begin to imagine what that must have been like.
But thanks, it wasn’t that tough. I just wasn’t sure if anyone would care.

5. sjbraun - November 16, 2009

Beautifully written; my condolences.

Peeps - November 17, 2009

Thank you. That’s nice of you.

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