Friday, July 24, 2009

Once an idiot, now my dad

Once an idiot, now my dad.

My dad and I have always had the strained relationship that most families do, except I was the worst of the worst for over 25 years. My father, never gave up on me. The more people I hurt, the more animals I killed and the further I slipped into the abyss,he was there. I cannot say I loved him for a VERY long time. Loving anyone, ever was something that was totally foreign to me.

My father tried his best to raise me to be a good man. His attempts failed. I am sure in some way, he blames himself for some of the mistakes he made but just like the rest of us, he is human. I did awful, terrible things to my entire family. (My sister still hates me to this day) He did the best he could to raise me to be ethical, fair, professional and above all, kind.
That wasn't to be.

While I slid further down the slope of women, drugs, anger, depression and self loathing he was always there with his two dollar wisdom that to me, was totally ridiculous. "Life is like the beach, it's beautiful, but it can flood." What the did I care about beaches,what did I care about life. I wanted him dead, my family dead and I wanted me dead. All of his wisdom didn't take into account the fact that I was a broken person.

Many people in my life ran, but he never did. He learned to cope just like I did in our usual ways that sometimes meant manipulation of each other simply because that's how we chose to survive the events that I myself created. There wasn't a time in my life when I could ever remember us having a "normal" relationship. We were either debating, at each other's throats,totally exhausted with each other and other times, fighting with each other. Either way I look at it, his life and mine were two totally and tragic worlds.

He wanted a son that was a professional, someone who made a difference in the world. That was his tragedy.

My tragedy is that I couldn't live up to those standards.

I sometimes wonder why I had to do the things I did for 25 years suffering with R.A.D. I realize now that it doesn't matter anymore. What's done is done and the damage that I have caused still hold myself accountable for. I have destroyed a lot of lives, including my own.

When I decided to find my birth family, I am sure my adoptive dad had the usual nervousness that accompanies that kind of journey. A father who didn't love his child could, but not my dad. My dad loves me to much. Today, I know that. Something happened that was much more profound than I could have ever imagined.

I realized that every time I sobbed over "I'm a terrible human being" emails that I would write in drunken stupors that I wasn't proving anything to him. All I was doing was wallowing in my own self loathing and I didn't even know it. Until a few months ago.

Since that time, I have opened up a RAD portal that I have spent hundreds of hours working on,I have self published a book, I run a non profit helping ANYONE with R.A.D. and I have dedicated myself to these programs. I literally go to sleep 1 hour after I finish work, and I wake up ready to sit in front of the computer and do it all over again. That's when I received the email that changed my life.

It was from my adoptive dad. He said, "I respect you and what your doing, I'm very proud of you".

I wanted to cry, but as many of you know I cried all my tears out long ago. Instead, I held my father in a new light. I saw him as my father for the first time in 25 years. I saw that I have become exactly what he wanted me to be.

Me.

Everyday is still a struggle overcoming the effects of R.A.D. Everyday, I have to learn how to live life over again. Every day I have think about how many years I spent trying to destroy myself.

BUT

Everyday now, I work 14-16 hour days with all three of my little companies. Everyday I want to help another person and promote RADOnline. Everyday I want to write something new. Every day I want to live the life of a free person. R.A.D. Survivors will tell you that R.A.D. is prison, and it is.

My dad See's me, at least in part, out of prison. He is beginning to see (I think) all of those morals, values and philosophical beliefs I thought to be crap coming from me. He is seeing a changed man, and he is changing with me. We are beginning our relationship NOW.

Those 25 years he wasn't my dad he was idiot.

Today, he's my father.

Michael
http://rad-online.org
http://ofaat.org

2 comments:

Lisa said...

Beautiful!

Mama Caguama said...

Your father is a very brave man to continue to love you through all that. And you are a very brave son to finally accept it.

Many blessings to you both!