I thought I’d share a bit about my dad. While a bit mundane, the truth is, most of life is pretty mundane, even for a bisexual, polyamourous, submissive, naturist, sexually adventurous person like myself!
As shared in my last post, my dad died recently – just before Thanksgiving. He was very much a product of his upbringing. Like most people, he had a difficult time separating that upbringing with what truly made him happy. He grew up in a very Anglo-Saxon-protestant-closed-minded-swallow-your-feelings-do-as-expected-the man-is-in-charge-appearance-over-substance family. From what he shared with me about his father, it sounded like his father had it even worse than him, as did his father before that. It’s as if each generation slowly shed this archaic and unhappy way of thinking, living, and loving.
As part of this, my dad learned to drink his problems away, which clearly doesn’t work. And when it doesn’t, the go-to is to then blame any problems on others — especially anyone “different.” However, he also unlearned these things. His life was very much one of transformation, into a thoughtful, loving, caring, and yes, even nurturing individual. Having his own family – and namely my mother – is what changed him. But it didn’t happen overnight.
I never fully experienced the “old” version of my dad. By the time I was born he had shunned most of his former ways (drinking, cheating, gambling, fighting — yeah, he spent some time in the county jail from various bar fights, drunk & disorderly, stuff like that). My siblings experienced more of that version of him.
He spent a long time trying to figure out how to be a good person. It started with him first going down the path of trying to just be a good husband. It took him a long time to get that right. By the time I was born, (I am the youngest) he saw it as his last opportunity to get fatherhood right. He worked hard to complete that path.
He was present for me. That’s saying a lot, as frankly, it all starts with being present for your kids. Then, of course, it is about what happens when you are present. My dad was involved and showed interest in all that I did, even making sure we had our own father-daughter outings without mom. I felt loved, accepted, and special. As a child, you can’t really ask for much better feelings than those. I know I was fortunate that the dad I knew was not the dad my siblings knew or the person my mom first married.
I think in some families this would have been fodder for resentment from my siblings, but honestly, it was the opposite. They all were happy for me and for my mom – and for my dad. While I am sure a part of them feels sorrow for what they missed out on, their lament never became resentment. For that, all credit goes to my mom.
My mom never made her kids feel responsible for their dad’s actions. And she worked tirelessly to fill us with joyful experiences such that we never felt a void from our father. And while my coming along was the impetus for his final transformation, it wasn’t a switch that suddenly flipped. It did take him a little time with some backsliding — however, I was always oblivious to this as mom never let on as to what was going on. Simply put, she allowed me and my siblings to experience the best of him and she shielded us from the worst.
I often think of how hard that was on mom. In many ways, the love we had for dad was undeserved and unearned. If only we knew. Ah, yes, what if we did? What if we were exposed to his ugliness? I can only imagine. Instead, each of us was exposed to his love, to whatever extent he was able to give it at the time. For me, it was a lot, and I will always be thankful to my mom for allowing him to express it and for me to experience it, absent any ill thoughts.
And how do I know all of this? Dad was very aware of his transformation and very open about talking about it. Mom actually says little about it. She never complained about how he once did this or once did that. But he often apologized, openly and in front of us, for having done certain things.
He wanted us to understand who he was and who he had become so that we could understand that people can indeed change. As a result, he also taught us that a lasting and joyful change can only be fueled by honesty, openness, and love. And again, as much as I could credit my dad for teaching this lesson, it isn’t lost on me, nor was it ever lost on him, that this would have not been possible if not for my mom.
She didn’t accept his behaviors and she even left him once for a time. But despite his actions she still loved him. Why? I don’t know. You can’t really explain love. His actions would certainly be enough for most people to fall out of love. Mom shared with me that she always saw that the best of him was always within him. As long as she sensed it was in him, she couldn’t stop loving him.
My dad was a fantastic grandfather to my kids. He totally accepted T1 and treated him the same as all other grandkids (as a reminder, T1 is not my biological son, he is Mike’s from a prior relationship). To be clear, T1 is my son, biology or not. I am also grateful that my children got to experience the best version of my dad as possible, as have my nieces and nephews.
Politics? Family? If you have only read my last few posts you’re probably confused as to what kind of blog this is. Well, it’s a Jenny kind of blog! I know the kink is more interesting, but there are times I need to show a bit of the person behind the kink.
Yes, I am a wife, mother, PTA attending, suburban-living, middle-aged housewife living a pretty normal life. It’s just wrapped in a lifestyle that is a bit unconventional (to put it mildly). Domestic Discipline and all the other “stuff” that goes with “My DD” are things that I do and a part of who I am. The occasional diversion into posts about other stuff is to help remind you that such things do not define all of who I am.
Yeah, I am pretty normal. For instance, just the other day after sex with my neighbors, my husband spanked me because . . .
Next: 289. The holidays – Thanksgiving