A few days before the New Year was upon us my dad’s father passed away. I’ve been struggling with my feelings about it mostly because I have already come to an understanding about my dad’s family, but it is just bringing up some tough stuff for my dad and it’s hard to watch that inner struggle. After years of dysfunction and physical and mental abuse my dad made the choice to be his own man and let go of the negativity in his life. He told my mom that if they ever had kids he wanted to change the family dynamic from one of abuse and dysfunction to one of love. He wanted to break the cycle.. and he did.
My sister and I were bathed in love and affection growing up and my dad worked hard to provide for us all and because of his hard work we learned the importance of taking pride in all that we do and how to support ourselves. We were also granted beautiful opportunities such as years of dance, music, art and other sport lessons and mini adventures along the way. He took the time to teach us how to do things and have us actively participate in helping around the house, taking care of the farm animals and planting in the garden. We were connected to our home and each other. History would not repeat itself and my dad even got sober for 20 + years including quitting smoking cold turkey.
Even though we live, grow and let go some things are hard to come to grips with. They still sit in the backs of our throats and rise up when occasions such as death, birth or any other emotional circumstances come up. We often wonder how people get or live to become a certain way. The Why’s or What could have been. But it’s their choice.. not ours and we should always choose for better, more loving lives.. and that’s what my dad did. I am so proud of him for being the strong soul that he is and that beneath the years of sadness and abuse all he had to give us was love. Because as soon as we were born we loved him.. no questions asked and no judgments laid.. he was our dad and we loved him. And I am so grateful that he never gave me that choice to love or move on and for that Dad, I thank you.
I may be far away but I hear the pangs of sadness from deep within.. of a Father-Son relationship that never was.. and more importantly of a Grandfather-Granddaughter relationship that never came to be.. The other night my dad said to me,
“This I will never understand.. how a baby so innocent could not be loved by her Grandfather. I can’t wait to have Grandkids.. and for someone to not care about a little one so full of love is beyond me.. and it makes me sad to think that he never got to know you or your sister.. because you two are great kids and I’m really proud of you both..”
Oh, Dad I can’t wait for my kids to know you someday. With our “Powers” combined they will only know a life of love and wonder. Our little Powers family of 4 will keep growing and growing and will never have to know the childhood you once had.. they will only know better. As my dad said to me, “a son should respect his father and a daughter should love her Dad…” Well Dad, not only do I love you the most but I respect you even more.. and when you have those to things you have everything. I love you and am so happy to know you… xo xo
In memory of my grandfather, Robert W. Powers Jr. I truly hope you are in a peaceful and loving place…