father's day realness
i miss my dad.
not like the way you miss your friends you haven't seen in a while. but really miss my dad. i miss calling him when i'm angry, and having him make me laugh. i miss painting with him. finding new ways to express all the craziness that gets jumbled up in my brain. i miss his music. listening to him play the piano or guitar. singing original songs about god knows what.
and no, he's not dead. but it sure fucking feels like it. my dad was sentenced to 18 to life. it's been 19 years. almost 20. 20 years since my dad's been a free man. and days like today make it particularly rough. not because i can't send him a card. not because i can't write him a letter. not because i can't hear his voice. not because i can't go see him. it sucks because i'm mad at him. i'm pissed!
he made a decision, 20 years ago, that left me and my sister, alone. to figure it out own our own. yes, we have a great mother, and amazing men who have filled in the gap. but there's nothing like your daddy. your flesh and blood. whose eyes you have, and laugh lines. whose temper you have, and feet. and when i have shitty days, i want to call my daddy. i want to hear his corny jokes. his quick wit. his silly songs about farts. but i can't. and i'm mad. i'm mad at him. and i've never really told anyone that. especially not him.
today i got a call. for a great gig. and i was so excited. and i didn't know who to call. the x and i are cool, but we're not "there". my "friend" is busy conquering the world... i get it. i wanted to call my daddy. and brag on myself. and hear him say "good job baby." but i can't. and i'm sad about it. and it's his fault. his fault his gone. when i need him. and my daughter is growing up, and asking me questions about my dad, that i can't answer. and it hurts.
he would love her. they're so silly. they would have inside jokes about farts. she would know that he is where our artistry comes from. and why she sings so well. he is so much of her. and she knows nothing of him. just a picture on my bedroom wall. a stranger. and it sucks.
i appreciate all the men in my life who have helped to fill the space. mr. ray, uncle timmy, mike, malcolm, dad (appleby), pops (gresham). and on yet another father's day, i pay homage to all the work you've done to make me know i'm loved, and special, and worthy. i am truly grateful for you.
to those who have your dad in reach. forgive. reach out. communicate. while you can. without restrictions or time limits. trust me, it's worth more than you know.