Thursday, March 24, 2005

Coming to terms with....

The moon is full outside and it's fucking beautiful. Fiona Apple is filling my home with music. My wife is carrying our much anticipated child. In short, life is good. Not perfect mind you. Who wants perfect. Perfect gets ruined and thus rendered imperfect, and we get upset that our precious speck of perfection is gone. Fuck perfect.

I've been getting to know my father a bit these last few months. Not personally. That's impossible since he killed himself before we could meet formally. We'd met before, of course, but I was an infant and don't remember a damn thing about him. So pictures and stories are what I have to rely on to find out about the man from whom I inherited, among other things, my not great but tolerable build, my chin, and from the stories I've heard, my appreciation for well placed sarcasm. Among other things.

And he was an imperfect human being, just like the rest of us. I wish I could say that he was an imperfect father, but he wasn't a father at all, of any kind, perfect, imperfect, overbearing, ineffectual, abusive, loud, obnoxious, apathetic, doting, embarrassing, religious. It has come to my attention as of late that all of the father figures in my plays are shits in one way or another. Even the majority of the adjectives I chose there are negative. So I have father issues. Fine. So what. Join the club. Here's your tee-shirt.

Except that I have a child of my own on the way. I will soon step into the shoes that my own father didn't pack when he took off. And I'm realizing that in spite of all the years that my father was absent from my life, all the time that passed that I didn't think about him, all the times I thought that he didn't matter and that I hadn't missed out on anything, in spite of the fact that it never once occurred to me to look him up, he has managed to affect me. And goddammit, now that he's dead and gone, I find that I have almost 30 years worth of shit I want to tell him, questions I want to ask him, things I want him to tell me. I want to hear his fucking voice.

But this is what I'm having to come to terms with. I will never talk to my father. He and I will never be in the same room together. I'll never have the chance to tell him anything, ask him anything, yell and scream at him, hear what he has to say for himself, tell him to take his bullshit excuses and shove them up his ass. And if I ever really truly forgive him, I won't be able to tell him myself.

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