Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Father (as in paternal parent, not God) (04/10/08)
TITLE: THROUGH HIS EYES
By Kathleen Morris
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The moment my daughter was born, I panicked. I thought I’d be tied down forever and my life was over. If she had come at a different time, perhaps I would have been better able to handle it.
But I am a coward.
Looking back on it now, I’m not sure if I even fully understand the repercussions of my own brainless behaviour. The damage that I did to her by not being there all her life can never be fixed.
Why am I such a loser?
Will she ever love me? Can she ever forgive me? The answer isn’t simple. Perhaps it would have been simple when she was just a toddler, learning how to talk. I could have made things right if I had just forced myself to be there when she called out my name for the first time.
But I missed my chance.
I wonder about her often, but my own selfishness gets in the way every time. I’d rather swig down my beer or puff on my cigarette than call her. Regret consumes me but I cover it by pretending that she doesn’t even exist.
I’m a good pretender.
All my life, I catch myself living that fantasy again. Me, doing the family thing, holding my daughter’s little hands and swinging her in circles as she giggles with glee. But that little girl doesn’t exist anymore. She has become someone else, someone disturbed.
Because of me.
I cry to God for mercy, but he doesn’t turn back the clock. This history is my thorn and he won’t pluck it from me. I can’t do anything but move forward in my own demise, lonely and impoverished.
I am empty.
I open my Bible on the days that I am able, and God speaks to me. He tells me that I am forgiven, but I don’t feel that way. I try to believe it, but I am ashamed. I hang my head embarrassed, for I am a pathetic excuse of a man.
A worthless man.
I blame. I blame all the time. I blame my old man for my own dilemma. It is his fault I turned out this way. I didn’t even know how to love someone because he never taught me. How could I do something I knew nothing about?
It wasn’t my fault.
But then it really hit me the day I surrendered it all. God should have been my example all along. I could have used his reflection to learn how to be there for my baby girl. I laughed out loud as I shouted the most profound lesson of my life.
“How could I be so blind?”
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