This one is harder to write about. Growing up, as stated before, our house was the party house. On weekends there would be biker gang members hanging out drinking, smoking pot, popping pills, and doing coke or angel dust. Being that I was spending a lot of time with my grandparents I wasn’t always there to be in the middle of it but there were times that I was there and loved hanging out with my Dad. He wasn’t always the nicest to my brother and half-sister (we have different Dad’s) though. My brother is 5 years older than me and my half-sister is 8 years older. He would punch my brother with a closed fist when he did something Dad didn’t approve of. I witnessed several of these “man to man (boy)” fights. It was not pretty and hurt my heart (remember I was 9 years and younger). Dad wasn’t that nice to my mom either. He would call her stupid and emotionally hurt her a lot. My mom had had enough of the emotional/mental abuse and decided to leave when I was around 9 years old. My brother was 14 and my half-sister 17 so they were old enough to decide for themselves. My brother wanted to stay with my Dad and my half-sister wanted to stay with my brother so they remained and I went on with Mom. Mom and I moved in with her Dad and Aunt in a duplex house. I would see my Dad off and on while they still lived in the country but not too often. I would go to the house and see my siblings on the weekends I was with my grandparents because they were next door. Years passed and my Dad and siblings moved into town about a mile away from me. I would walk over to see them from time to time. My Dad and I were not that close by this time and when my siblings moved out it was less and less that we saw each other. I found out later that my Mom used to call my Dad and beg him to come and pick me up. He would tell her that he didn’t know what to do with me. Mom told him I was just happy to be there and he didn’t have to do anything but just be there. It didn’t work. As years continued on I would only see him at Thanksgiving and Christmas at my Grandparents.
When I graduated from high school I had 5 tickets to give to folks to come to the graduation. I invited my Mom, step dad, boyfriend, my uncle (not one previously written about) and his wife. The reason I invited my uncle and his wife was because they would always call me and see how school was going and when they would see my name in the newspaper for honor roll they would call or send a card. Not once did my Dad ever do that! At that point my half-sister had moved to Canada so she wasn’t an option and my brother…well he is a story for another time. So I made my selections using the criteria that made sense to me…invite those that cared about my education. My own grandparents didn’t show that much attention! That Thanksgiving my Grandmother was upset with me because I hadn’t invited my Dad to graduation and told me that it really hurt him. I explained my reasons again but fell on deaf ears. One of my cousins, who I never really cared for, kept getting in my face telling me that I needed to make up with my Dad, like she had done. So Dad and I got into his car and had a talked where I had a chance to tell him how I felt. He apologized and we both cried. I thought maybe something would have changed at that time…but it didn’t.
Let me go back a little bit…there was one more reason that I didn’t invite Dad to the graduation and that’s because I didn’t really want him and Mom in the same room. My mom might have committed murder that day. The reason…well it had to do with something my half-sister told us prior to her moving to Canada….