Thursday, May 26, 2011


When I was a little girl, my Daddy was the "King of the World"... and I was a "Daddy's Girl" to the core. The sun rose and set around him, in my eyes. He was such an amazing daddy. I can actually remember sitting on the living room floor with him, building castles with my Disney blocks ... mere moments after he came home from whatever menial job he had worked that day ... never mattered - he always had all the time in the world for his girl.

My parents decided to call it quits some time before my 5th birthday. I don't begrudge them that decision ... I still can't believe they were ever together for long enough to have created a child ... me. If I wasn't so disturbingly like BOTH of them, I would have sworn my mother caught me off a toilet seat. The truth is that, had premarital sex been more socially acceptable back in the late 60's, my parents would likely never have married and I would not be here today (or at least not in my current format).

When my mother finally announced that she had come to the end of her time with him, he was very hurt. He tried very hard to convince her to stay, but she wanted to be happy and insisted they break up. He finally conceded and informed her she was free to go ... but "I'm not going anywhere ... and you aren't taking my baby". Gotta give my dad props for that bold move all the way back in 77, eh? This was how I came to live with just my dad for my first year of school. It was unusual at the time, to say the least. But, it was what worked for us. I got to spend weekends with Mom. We hung out at her new apartment. I can remember Disco Fever used to be on TV and I would dress up in her bathing suit cover up and high heeled shoes ... and dance the show away.

The down side of this arrangement was that my father worked A-LOT of hours ... and often out of town. This meant that I spent a REE-DIC-ULOUS amount of time at my babysitter's house. Often overnight a couple of times through the week. It sucked. (There is a fairly compelling opinion within the medical community that "things happened" to me while staying with these people. Not through any fault of my father's - I am certain he was very comfortable with their set up, and felt I would be safe ... you just can't safeguard your kids against every wack-job on the planet ... it isn't possible.) Eventually, Mom got fed up with the amount of time I was spending there and just took me home to her house ... for good. Daddy didn't fight about it ... I guess he just knew it was better for me if I lived with Mom.

At that point, the roles reversed ... and then I started to spend weekends with him. He also used to show up at my school for my lunch break now and then and take me out for lunch in his new sports car (a Celica Supra)... I felt like the fricken Queen of Sheba! The only problem with this was, by this time, he had started dating again... and his girlfriend had a daughter, too. This began a period of change for me. I was the center of attention, no longer. Now, not only did I have to share my daddy with an adult woman, but with another child, too. I don't really remember consciously having issue with that concept. I was a fairly mature child (which explains the fact that I have reverted so much as an adult). I think for the most part, I took everything in stride ... though I really hated that little bitch of a daughter. Man! What a spoiled little bitch she was!

Then, when I was 7 - Mom met Robin ... who wound up becoming my step father and the dad of my two half sisters ... and Daddy met Dorothy - the psycho-mommy-dearest-nut-case that became my (wicked) step mother (in EVERY sense of the phrase). She had two children - from two different baby daddies (should have been his FIRST clue) ... and they were MESSED UP. I was very close to the age of her daughter, and we got along fairly well. They married when I was 10 or 11, I think ... maybe I was slightly older ... my sisters were around by that point, I think ... so I may have even been 12. 

By the time I turned 13, things had already become strained between my dad and me. Dorothy was a lunatic - and I shit you not! She was NUTS! This was a woman that LITERALLY went behind her daughter with a white glove to check on her dusting capabilities. LITERALLY beat this girl with a metal hanger because it showed up under one of her (the daughter's) sweaters in her closet. I managed to (mostly) escape her wrath ... but it really was only a matter of time. Time that came when I was 14. It had to do with me inviting some kids that I had met at a summer camp I had attended to their place (as they lived in the same community - and at this point, I lived out in boonie-ville with Mom & Robin). I had asked for permission, and it was granted ... but when they showed up, Dorothy had a change of heart and proceeded to embarrass the living shit out of me in front of said friends.
Now that, in and of itself, was not enough to do irreparable damage to my relationship with my father, but what happened next was. 

He took her side.

If you were standing next to me in that moment, you would have actually heard my heart break.

I called my mother and within an hour or so, I was being picked up and taken out to the house of the friends to apologize to them in person and try to smooth some feathers (the whole scene with Dorothy was UGLY ... she absolutely freaked her friggen head off all over me and them ... screaming and acting like a complete psychopath - seriously ... it was bad) ... then I went home. Never to return (or at least never for an overnight visit) again. 

Things have remained strained between my father and I ever since that day. He and Dorothy divorced (not terribly long after that incident - though one had nothing to do with the other) and she took him for everything he was worth ... honestly - any moron could have seen THAT one coming. He then hooked up with the woman he has lived with for the past 20 odd years.

We have stayed in touch (somewhat) over the years, and he was there the day I gave birth to Stretch... being the proud "Papa" (which he is called by his current wife's grandchildren). When I had Shorty, however ... his wife had developed a problem with me due to something I had apparently said to her at a BBQ I had invited them to (almost exactly nine months prior to giving birth, ironically enough)  ... a BBQ at which, I was feelin' pretty groovy ... and when I refused to give her the recipe for my shish-ka-bob marinade (that was from a package, I may add) she informed me that "I owed her" and I (being the flippant smart ass that I am) shot back: "I owe you NOTHING!" (ha ha) 

Apparently, this was a great affront to her personage ... and once again, my father chose his woman over me. 

Honestly, I would have accepted that if he had just been man enough to talk to me about it ... but instead, he told my youngest sister (because he had fixed her computer for her) what I had done ... and how his wife didn't want anything to do with me now - because I had offended her so. She (my sister) then told my mother ... and said in no certain terms should I be told any of this ... and my mother (in typical "Mom" fashion) got me on the horn and dished. Now, I have since interviewed EVERYONE that was in attendance that fateful day, and NOBODY remembers anything even remotely aggressive coming out of me - especially aimed at her. Cripes, I had known the woman 15 bloody years at that stage ... wouldn't THAT ALONE have been enough history to warrant giving me the benefit of the doubt? Write off my behavior as that of a hopeless drunkard? --- which, incidentally was THE TRUTH!

Apparently not.

This little nugget of knowledge was just about enough to seal the casket in my mind, but I had children to consider and this was their grandfather I was about to remove from their lives. So ... I swallowed my pride and tried to smooth things over. We stayed in choppy touch for a year or so, but after he missed Shorty's first birthday (after having made a big deal over Stretch's) I lost what little cool I had left - and I unceremoniously cut him out of my life. This didn't take much, other than just not calling him. It isn't like he had made any effort on his part.

Just about three years passed with no contact between him and me. Bearing in mind that my meddling mother called him - more than once ... and even met with him to discuss our falling out. He still made no effort to rekindle our relationship. In the meantime, Michael had lost both of his parents (well, his father had died 4 days before our original wedding date ... but his mother passed on Stretch's 3rd birthday) and his incessant comments about how much I would regret not patching things up should my father pass away finally wore me down - just this past year.

To be fair (to me) I think that it is HIS responsibility to 'fix' this. HE is the "GROWNUP" in this scenario! I am his ONLY child! MY children are his ONLY BIOLOGICAL GRANDCHILDREN! You would think he would want to have a relationship with us ... no matter what the cost - wouldn't you? All I wanted was for him to smarten up and give a crap about us. Alas, this was not meant to be. He had made reference to the fact that I was keeping my children away from him (when he spoke to my mother) and that he wasn't in a position where he could justify begging me for that privilege.

None the less, I swallowed (hard) and wrote him a lengthy email. I explained to him why I was so hurt. I was very careful of the "tone" of the email ... as to not offend his tender sensibilities. I basically said that I was willing to "start fresh" and just "work from today and go forward", that the girls asked about him often and had a strong desire for family. (Something they clearly had not gotten from me)

He waited EIGHT MONTHS to answer my email. I honestly thought he hadn't gotten it and had considered resending it - but hadn't at that stage. His response clearly indicated to any bozo reading it, that he missed the point by so many miles/kilometers/hectares/acres/aw hell ... PROVINCES that it was actually laughable. Incidentally, my mother firmly believes that his mental capacity has been damaged somehow - as his actions are outside of his normal character.

So here is a question: How much of his crap should I be willing to take after these MANY years of taking said crap?

I didn't dwell on his glaring misunderstanding. I simply attempted to move on and just get him together with his grandchildren. I behaved in a manner befitting a mother that wants what is best for her offspring. I was actually somewhat proud of my bad self (as were my mother and husband) for my performance that first day. He also came out before Christmas to see the girls ... and actually gave them a pretty cool Christmas pressy (one I wish at this point, he hadn't bothered with ... because ...) then, he was gone again. He missed the girls birthdays - AGAIN ... and he is playing the whole: 'it's her turn to call me' game AGAIN! SIGH!

So, how much do I take? When can I safely say "I did everything I could". Just how many things do I actually have to do? This pisses me off so much, I could spit ... and scream ... and spit again!

Why is it that I can not make peace with this?

Friday, May 20, 2011

Some Lessons are Harder Than Others

Some two years ago (nearly to the day, eerily enough), I posted this.

I knew then, that the situation I had involved myself in had come to an end ... and I was okay with that - as much as it stung at the time. He did email me again ... on my birthday that following November. 

I did not respond.

There has been no contact between us since then ... and from the bottom of my heart, I am totally okay with that. It was a truly stupid (and potentially dangerous) thing for me to be messing around with... and it went on for much longer than it ever should have.

There is a sign on a church I drive past every day that says: Don't screw up an apology with an excuse. This is a pretty poignant comment ... it's something I am guilty of ... all.the.time. Today's post will be no exception.

See ... those of you who read this page know that I have experienced somewhat of a transformation over the past several months. I had weight loss surgery and so far have lost 90 of the 144 lbs I want to lose ... honestly, I am thinking another 20 - 30lbs will do it, but we'll see where I land.

I hate to admit this, because it demonstrates all too clearly how superficial and vain I truly am ... but this is a post about truth and I'm coming clean with it ... if for no other reason than so I can sleep again. 

For the past decade (or more) I have been trapped under a pile of weight with the real me lost to the world in all ways ... with the exception of anonymity. On line, I was still 22 year old, hot Dani ... who was funny and quirky and sometimes even 'sessy' ... in a cute and flirtatious kinda way. That was me - Imp (my ONLY nickname from school). It is what the people who have known me the longest refer to as "the old 'Dani'". The person that they are all starting to see 'real time' glimpses of again. I hear it often these days. I honestly don't know if they mean how I look - or how I act ... possibly a bit of both, but it feels SO BLOODY GOOD! 

I mean, I have been reclusive. So full of shame at how I had allowed my body to go so far out of control ... and I COULD NOT fix it. I tried. I honestly did. But the general populace looks at obese people as weak ... or lazy ... or sometimes even stupid. I guess I shouldn't point fingers, since I felt all of that about myself ... and much, much worse. I haven't felt like I deserved anything good in my life for a long time. And the things that are (and have always been) good about my life - that beautiful man to whom I am married and those two gorgeous daughters of mine - well ... that was a fluke in my mind. Something I'd likely screw up one way or another. I have been in a very dark place.

But now ... it's like those first blooms on the trees in the Spring. You know when you look up from your hum drum, work a day life and realize that while you weren't paying attention, everything beautiful in the world came to life again. That is honestly how I feel about me. (Don't get me wrong, I don't mean to insinuate that I am the beautiful bloom ... just that the new and improved me is so much more 'present' in her life.) I am connected to the person I have long related to, at least when playing pretend on line, but couldn't be reconciled to ... until now.

That in mind ... I recently visited his city. 

Now ... until very recently, I had NEVER imagined I would be in a place where I would even consider meeting ANY person who didn't know me in person from the start. People I work with daily (via phone/email etc) have a very different view of me than what would have stood in front of them. People I have connected with over the interwebs ... NO FRICKEN WAY, MAN! Never happen. But now ... well now things look different from my perspective. I am out there (no ... not THAT kind of 'out there' ... well, that too ... but not here). Shopping, buying new clothes ... shoes ... getting my hair done regularly ... having my nails done ... moisturizing, even ... all things I never really bothered with - I mean what was the point, right? When I put the war paint on and get dressed to go out now ... I actually feel good about myself. Not to say there isn't still plenty-o-room for improvement, but I haven't felt like anything short of an ogre for a very ... VERY long time. Then I get on a plane, fly out to a strange city to meet a friend I met here, on my blog (read all about it here) and loved every second of it.

But - all the while, working in the background ... I am thinking about how close 'he' really is. Not that I had any intention of contacting him while there ... too dangerous ... but the fact that I could and I would have been alright with it (mostly). I thought about mailing a note while still in the city ... or possibly even calling from the airport ... but I promised myself before I left home that I would not contact him while there. And, I didn't.

When I got home, however ... the urge did not dissipate. I kept telling myself to sleep on it one more night ... which worked for two nights ... but once back to work, I could wait no longer ... and I emailed him. The note was 'light'. I made reference to the fact that I had been in 'his' city and therefore, he had entered my mind. Mentioned that things were going really great for me (and mine) now ... that "as much as I had damned (his) soul to hell for treating me the way (he) had", I hoped the same could be said for him. I made no insinuation to rekindling our online connection - in fact, I made it clear that at the end of the day, I had been relieved (after recovering from the sting) that it was finished.

This is the EXACT cut and paste of what he sent back - very quickly, I might add (and if he thinks what I sent to him was 'venting' - he's never seen venting):

At least u vented and that is healthy for you - so u shouldn't regret writing.
I seriously cannot communicate with you as I am with someone and do not have room nor the inclination for any female friends.
Sorry to say this but your drama frightens me.
Please respect my privacy and just remember the good times ok.
I seriously cannot have you in my life and am sorry that it hurts you.

Take care and ciao


My drama frightens him? To be crystal clear, the whole reason any of this ever even got started was BECAUSE of "my drama" and my ability to write about it. In fact, when I started my blog, it was to replace him ... as (at best) he was a creative writing assignment for me, and (at worst) he was a boost for my otherwise deflated ego. You guys give me all of that - and so much more ... and I don't have to experience the guilt that always tagged along with that connection (even though my hubby was aware of that 'relationship' and saw it for what it was: a silly flirtation that made me feel good about myself - however briefly ... I would NEVER have been so understanding ... he's a saint, my hubby).

I know that I asked for it by contacting him ... I also wonder if there was any response he could have given that would have been better. I mean - had he been overly receptive, I might have gotten sucked back into that BS ... if he had ignored it, I may have thought he didn't get it, and tried to make contact another way ... that would have been so, SO much worse. And, he could have been meaner about it. I guess I really didn't think it through from start to finish (story of my life) and made yet another stupid, rash decision that got me into trouble. It felt like getting snapped in the face with a wet dish towel (and yes, I DO know what that feels like, thanks). My poor, silly pride has been smarting all week.

At the end of the day, it is all for the best. The answers are right there for me to see. I'll never really know what happened that caused him to drop me on my head so abruptly, but I would expect it had to do with a woman ... a real live one that he could play with for realz. Maybe it really was my "drama" ... I just can't see it, since he thrived on it for all of those years and encouraged me to write about it all.the.time. I have now come to terms with the slight against my pride, and know that I got smacked because I deserved it. I don't believe that I deserved to be treated in the manner that I was by him ... no ... I really didn't deserve that, but I should have left him securely lodged in my past.

My response to his response was a good one. I said: Excellent. I am happy for you. You will never hear from me again. (... and nothing more - which was harder for me than any other part, honestly)

And he won't.

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