Archive for ‘daddy’

February 16, 2011

Nineteen years and counting…

Thoughts of my father surfaced recently. I am so frustrated.  How do you settle what can never be settled… find closure with someone you can never speak to again… have one last moment with someone who is gone forever?

It’s going on 19 years soon… but still… a part of me feels like the 14-year-old he left behind… only more tired… less youthful… and the void he left behind… larger and more empty…

Still not sure how to make peace with his death… with all of my unacknowledged feelings… with all of my pain… with my daddy issues… with my never-enough-complex…

I don’t know what I wish… that he were here maybe? Healed hopefully… but more than likely… he’d still be drunk… and high… disappointing me… and feeding my complex… and lord knows… my mother does that enough.  I have never heard her say she was proud of me… never…

I cried myself to sleep two nights ago… torturing myself with thoughts of him… the few good times we had together during his sober moments… he was the apple of my eye then…

I have my own regrets… I guess never imagining that our time would be cut so short… always thinking there would be that later time… hoping that he would get his shit together… and that we’d finally get to have our time… that finally I would have my time… just to be a kid… to be free… to be loved… to be his baby girl… to be number one… to be a priority… to feel safe… and taken care of… to be worry free… to not be second… shit… third even… to his drugs and alcohol…

That time never came… and my heart still feels like it’s waiting…

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November 16, 2010

this day…then.

so many things happened…
on this day, then…
things I wish I could change…
and forget…
you left this world…
and me…
maybe the world didn’t notice…
you slip away…
but I have felt…
the insatiable emptiness…
of your departing…
every minute…
of every day…
you left this world…
and me…
this day, then…
eighteen years ago…
and now you’re in a place…
where your heartaches…
are painless…
and your burdens…
are weightless…
but I’m still here…
in this world…
living without you…
but a part of me hasn’t lived…
since this day, then…
eighteen years ago…
when you left this world…
and me…
RIP Daddy 11.16.1992
February 16, 2010

Dear Daughter…

I’m sorry this has taken so long.  My heart aches as I think of all of the things I did to hurt you.  I am so sorry I chose a soul numbing substance over you…over our family.   Sorry I hurt your mother.  Sorry I robbed you of your innocence, and allowed you to witness things a child’s eyes should never see.  Sorry I stole your youth and forced you into adulthood way before your time.  I am so sorry my demons became yours.  I’m sorry I put others before you.  I am sorry I was too high and drunk to realize how badly you wanted my love and affection.  Sorry I pushed you into the arms of men searching for a fathers love.  I am sorry. I am so sorry I couldn’t guide you and teach you… love you and father you… nurture you and make you feel secure.  I am so very sorry. I’m sorry I left you feeling lost and broken… I am sorry that you are still hurting…that you still long for my love…I’m loving you from heaven… and I’m proud of how you’ve overcome… I see your struggle and your pain and I am sorry I am not there with you.  I’m sorry for all the years you suffered in a violent relationship because you didn’t know any different.  I am sorry for the wrong paths you chose because I wasn’t there to advise you.   I know my death was senseless and preventable… I am sorry I didn’t hear your cries…your pleading…and begging… for me to stop…for me to choose life…to choose you.  I’m so sorry I didn’t choose you.  I’m sorry that you won’t ever receive this letter…or get the closure that you want so badly.  I am sorry that I never said I was sorry.  My dearest sweet daughter…I loved you dearly…and I am so very sorry.

September 4, 2009

i didnt forget you daddy.

his day was a week ago.  i tried to let it pass quietly.  but i have been feeling the tug.  the need to write about him.  i want him to know that i still remember him.  that his loss will forever be felt.  we lose people, we mourn them, but over time, it gets easier.  we think of them a little less as the years go by.  its only natural. life goes on.

its been seventeen years, and it hasn’t gotten easier.  at times it seems as if it has become more painful.  every time i see a father reading to his little girl.  or a daughter and father walking hand in hand.  a teary eyed dad walking his baby down the isle. it breaks me.

i was watching intervention and saw a family destroyed by alcoholism.  i saw a man near death.  i saw him get the help he needed.  i saw a family united and witnessed a happy ending.

im so jealous of that.  i wanted that so badly.

they say you have to let them hit rock bottom.  apparently for my father, that bottom was pretty low.  and on the way there… death caught up with him.  his painful journey to that final day was difficult to witness.  even as a child i remember wanting to help him.  wanting to assume the parent role and show him that we could be happy, as a family.  i can still see the glazed look in his eyes… seemed as if he were looking right through me.

i miss him.

i’ve had more years without him, than i had with him.

i dont go to his grave often.  i think in the seventeen years he’s been gone, i have been there maybe three times.  i think maybe i will go there and lay a blanket on his grave and just be with him.  although i know thats not him anymore.   its tangible.

Daddy, I wish you hadn’t left me so soon.  I wish I could have seen your heart healed.  I wish my children knew your laugh.  You would have been an awesome grandfather. My heart still feels heavy.  I still feel the pain I felt on that day.  I won’t ever forget how carelessly it was told to me.  I wish I could wake up, and this would all be a dream.  Though I know I would just be waking up to the nightmare that was your life.  I hated that we left you in that apartment alone, but you left us little choice.  I remember when you tried to get better.  You came to church with us every Sunday and you walked around with a Bible, preaching to your friends.  You were better for a short while.  But the pain and reality of having lost your family.  Having to reside in that house  that was once filled with my voice and moms voice.  The scent of home cooking filling it.  The TV blaring my favorite shows.  My best friend… and she still is Dad, 28yrs now… she’d be there acting a fool…the dog barking… I know the quietness was torturous.  You relapsed for the last time.  And you died alone… and I hate that.  I hate that I didn’t see you one last time.  I hate that you died thinking that I didn’t love you… and that you had failed me.  I hate it.  I am so sorry for not coming to see you that last weekend.  That decision still haunts me.  I forgive you for everything.  I don’t want time to steal you from me.  I don’t want my memories to be come vague.  They are all I have left. Our good times were good.  We were robbed Daddy, you and I.  We weren’t done.  Not anywhere near it.  A part of me didn’t grow anymore after you left me.  The little girl that still needed her Daddy is snuggled close to you in that grave…she died with you.

August 7, 2009

love.

this is going to be a bumpy ride.

an “are we there yet” kind of experience.

my thoughts are here, there and everywhere.

LOVE.

man has found a way to put a label on everything.

has created words to describe the indescribable.

LOVE even has a definition in the dictionary as if it can really be defined.

LOVE…

  1. A deep, tender, ineffable feeling of affection and solicitude toward a person, such as that arising from kinship, recognition of attractive qualities, or a sense of underlying oneness.
  2. A feeling of intense desire and attraction toward a person with whom one is disposed to make a pair; the emotion of sex and romance.
    1. Sexual passion.
    2. Sexual intercourse.
    3. A love affair.
  3. An intense emotional attachment, as for a pet or treasured object.
  4. A person who is the object of deep or intense affection or attraction; beloved. Often used as a term of endearment.
  5. An expression of one’s affection: Send him my love.
    1. A strong predilection or enthusiasm: a love of language.
    2. The object of such an enthusiasm: The outdoors is her greatest love.
  6. Love Mythology. Eros or Cupid.
  7. often Love Christianity. Charity.
  8. Sports. A zero score in tennis.

REALLY?

man has even written a book.  called it the bible. and deemed it the right way to live.  the right way to love. the only way to truly know God.  and adherence to the rules within this man-made book is the only way to enter the pearly gates of heaven…as if there are iron workers in heaven.

each time i have loved. my definition of love has evolved.  each time i said I LOVE YOU. i meant it. i meant with all my heart knew of love, at that time.

i remember being five years old or so, and standing before my mother as she knelt down to fiddle with my scarf. she wrapped it in a way only a mother can. air tight. i knew that was love.  i remember asking her… “mommy, why do you let daddy hit you?” i knew that wasnt love.

funny though, i knew that wasnt love, but it was all i knew. and i would know it first hand.

before i knew i was gay.

before i knew what love really was.

before i had any business loving anybody.

when all i wanted was attention.

i loved him.

and he loved me too.

he told me so.

he said, “i love you so much.  I will break both your legs if you ever leave me.”

he said, “i love you so much.  I will kill you if you ever cheat on me.”

crazy, but it felt like love to me.  i thought wow… he REALLY loves me!

i was only twelve years old. and it was the only concept of love i had ever known.

he went to jail shortly after confessing his love to me.

when he came home from prison.  he found out something that i had done (another post).  he called me upstairs. he lived in the apartment above mine.  i ran up.  he greeted me by the door.  i dont recall him saying anything.  he slapped me hard across the face. it stung.  i was paralyzed. in complete disbelief. BAM….again, and again, and again.  i felt the warm stream of fear trickling down my legs.  he was yelling at me. but i cant tell you what he said.  i havent a clue.  when he dismissed me, i ran down the stairs. into my apartment. to my bed. and cried. he called me later that night to say he was sorry. i was happy to hear from him.

fast forward.

summer of 1993. i was fifteen. our one month old daughter was sleeping in the crib. it was about 4am.  we were watching a movie. i was eating   chef boyardee ravioli. he started questioning me about the same incident that happened back in 1991. a knot formed in the pit of my stomach.  and just as i had anticipated.  the ravioli went flying. my eyes became wide as i looked at the intensity in his.  he had this evil look about him when he became enraged.  he asked me questions, and ended each question with a powerful slap to my face. each one harder than the last. or maybe my skin just became more sensitive with each blow.  i backed myself onto the sofa and hugged my knees.  he punched my legs as i buried my head into my arms. he jerked my body out of the ball i had formed myself into.  and wrapped his hands tight around my neck.  crazy how your body reacts to intense fear.  its as if your brain goes into some kind of self preservation mode.  and it can no longer waste any brain cells on things like bladder control. i felt a gush of warmth escape me. it almost felt good. his grip was terrifying.  i felt my face. the horror that was all over it.  the look on his was worse.  blank. angry. emotionless. he took me into the room and held my face over the crib.  said some taunting things about me never seeing our daughter again.  pushed me into the corner of the room. and began punching me all over. twice in the face. my legs. my stomach.  when i keeled over in pain. he punched me on my back.  the sun had come up.  my mother heard the commotion and began knocking on our locked bedroom door. he told me to tell her to go away.  each time she knocked. he slapped me in the face and told me to tell her to go away. this happened several times until she noticed the pattern.  finally she stopped.  he told me to lay down. i did. he plopped himself down next to me. i cried and sniffled as quietly as i could. i told him i had to pee.  he gestured for me to go.  i held my head in my hands as i sat on the toilet.  i flushed and turned on the water. i stared at my reflection. bruised. puffy. red. scared. i left the water on and ran. i ran out of the apartment. and kept running. i was barefoot.  with nothing on but a night shirt. no panties.  i approached a man who was standing in his doorway talking to another man.  now in a panic with tears streaming down my face i begged him to use his phone. he pulled his friend inside and slammed the door. i just kept running.  i noticed someone in their kitchen, and knocked on their door.  i told them it was an emergency, and begged them to use their phone.  the man looked around for a minute and opened the door for me to come in.  he sat me down and his pregnant wife inquired silently about the almost naked hysterical girl in her kitchen.  he handed me the phone and she rubbed my back. it hurt but her touch felt comforting.  i called the police. the husband gave me a pair of shorts to put on. i wanted to stay with them.

i arrived back at the house to find him putting our infant daughter in his car.  he drove off.  i ran after the car with every ounce of strength  i had.  i could hear the sirens not far behind me.

he was arrested.

the day was long after that. painful. i had never in my life been hit before.  oddly enough, my father NEVER struck me.  he slapped me one time when i got a little too crazy playing rough with him.  he whooped me with his belt another time after i had run away for two days.  but it was funny to me. didnt hurt. i could tell he didnt want to.

i didnt press charges. he stood away for a while.  talked about moving to north carolina. but he was back home in less than two weeks.  he made me destroy the photos of my black eyes and bruised body.  i stood nine more years. and suffered many more torturous episodes. only difference was, i think he realized, the less evidence the better. so he stuck with mostly throwing me around, fear tactics and choking.

i remember one time he was angry with me about some shit.  i was in the bathroom using a curling iron.  he snatched the cord from the socket that was above my head.  and the metal part of the plug hit me in the face.  on the soft skin right under my eye.  i flinched and instinctively shut my eyes as it struck me.  when i opened them, there was this single red stream of blood pouring down my face.  as if i was crying blood.  he sucked his teeth and walked away. he felt stupid because he hadnt intended to go that far. but was too much of an asshole to comfort me.

i just stood there staring at myself.

with all i knew. and didnt know.

i knew this wasnt love.

July 31, 2009

in the absence of love

this post will be mostly rambling.  i wont pay much attention to punctuation.

i read a blog post this morning about feeling ugly.  about using your body and sexuality to satisfy the longing to feel love.  to feel pretty. to feel wanted.  i post a lot of poetry, some of which allows the reader a glimpse of me.  i hadnt intended to write anything too deep and revealing about myself.  but you know when you feel that tug, that urge to purge.  more for your sake than for the entertainment of the eyes that will take the time to read the delicate details of your life.  well anyway, it got me to thinking about my childhood.  or should i say the lack of my childhood.  i remember as a little girl wanting attention from my father so badly. and never getting it.  my mother was more present in my life than he was.  but even her presence was a distant one.  like she wasnt nurturing really. nor was my grandmother.  but they were there nonetheless.  my grandmother “cared” for me.  She lived with us until i was about 9yrs old.  she walked me to school.  and she picked me up most afternoons.  on the days when she didnt i would come home and there would be devil dogs (or some chocolaty equivalent) and milk waiting for me.  i would inhale them while watching duck tales.  the intro to that cartoon still makes me sad.  i would do my homework and eventually fall asleep.  i would wake to the jingle of Three’s Company and a piping hot plate of mashed potatoes, puerto rican style pork chops (the best) and some kind of vegetable being placed on a tray in front of me.  i can almost smell the pork chops when i hear the intro to Three’s Company even today.  we didnt eat dinner as a family.  my father was usually working, or pretending to work.  my mom wasnt home from work yet.  and honestly i dont recall her.  she suffered from depression and my memories of her at that time are vague.  she didnt play with me.  she didnt tickle me or read me stories.   i didnt realize those were the things i was longing for.  but i felt the void.  and even though my grandmother wasnt emotional with me, i felt her love in the things that she did with me and for me.  my relationship with father was weird.  he was a drug addict and alcoholic and abused my mother viciously. but i loved him so much.  i saw his heart during his sober moments. and i knew that he was hurting.  he never came to my performances. he didnt come to my elementary school graduation. i was salutatorian and had to make a speech.  and received a personalized trophy.  it was my first ever since i was never enrolled in any kind of sport or dance class.  i remember looking for him in the audience. wishing the ceremony would stall a bit to give him time to come rushing through the doors.  i imagined him making eye contact with me and smiling a proud smile.  i remember going home after the ceremony and finding him passed out drunk on the sofa.  when he did finally wake up.  he beat my mother for making him miss my graduation.  while other kids were at diners with their families celebrating, i was watching my mother being dragged from one room to another.  my grandmother pleading with him to stop. her hands motioning to her chest.  when the chaos was over.  the quietness was deafening.  each party retreating to a corner. i never felt so alone.  i remember going outside that day and sitting on a bench in my graduation dress wishing someone would come after me to console me.  but they never did.  console me.  have you ever run away from someone hoping they would run after you?  i was an only child. and my desire for attention and love was so intense.  more than anything i wanted to be daddy’s girl.

rewinding a bit.

when i was 6yrs old, my mother cut off all my hair.  she didnt know how to manage my kinky curls.  in hindsight i dont think it was so much that she didnt know how or couldnt, i think she just couldnt be bothered.  this may not seem like such a big thing, but it was to me.  i had this mini afro thing going on until the age 11.  those 5yrs were painful.  i was skinny and awkward looking with an afro.  this was the 80’s.  my best friend had long hair, she would braid it and do all kinds of cute things to her hair.  i felt so ugly and was often mistaken for a boy.  did i mention i had HORRIBLE acne?  putting an image together in your head?  yes i was fugly.  i hated to walk by groups of people.  i could feel them staring at my face, even when they werent.  i would choose a seat on the bus based on what side of my face was less pimply.  there was this grocery store around the corner from my building. it was a major hang out.  almost like a community center.  men holding drinks in brown paper bags.  my dad was always one of them.  little kids running in and out with ten cent ices and quarter waters.  women chatting about this and that.  i walked in one day and the woman who owned it was standing there with the woman who would cut my hair.  i am not sure how my pimples became a topic.  but they did.  i hated that.  at least you have a pretty face.  thats what they said to me.  you’re not an ugly girl, imagine if you were ugly and had acne.  i felt the tears forming, gave them a fake but kind smile, and ran out of the store.  i learned the art of fake smiling very early on in life.  i had to do it every time someone would ask me, how are you doing?  i would smile and say fine.  when really everything was a mess.

ok so i am 12yrs old and my hair is growing out.  another awkward stage but i tried to work it as best i could.  my breast began to grow. my hips widened.  and my flat ass became a plump bulge in the back.  and just like that.  ATTENTION.

mmmm damn mami.

i like that ass.

hey chula.

can i have some of that.

hey sexy.

psst psst.

hey mami, lemme get cha number.

dame chocha.

mira mami, venir aquí.

it felt so good.  i was aware of my sexuality and the effect it had on men.  i loved the attention.  it made me feel good to be noticed. to be wanted. to feel desired.  i would dress to accentuate my lady lumps.  my breast were perky. my skin was smooth.  my legs were long.   my friends were already having sex.  i was still a virgin.  i had learned how to masturbate.  it was actually an accident that happened while taking a bath.  but i knew that i liked it and did it often.  i remember the things i would fantasize about while masturbating.  they were odd for a child of my age.  being restrained. gagged even.  but i didnt have the urge to have sex.

i eventually did have sex that year.  I didnt like it.  it didnt feel good to me. but i loved the power in my pussy.  i remember standing in front of a mirror.  my youthful body tanned from a day at the beach.  the neon colors of my bathing suit popping in contrast to my bronzed skin. i loved what i saw.  after years of hating the way i looked.  the feeling of being able to look in the mirror and be in love with my reflection was intoxicating.

the male attention. a poor substitute for the love i craved from my father.  it filled the void only for a moment.  the space he left in my heart is unfillable.

June 21, 2009

The spot at the end of the hall…

This weekend I visited the most painful and beautiful place from my past
It’s where I spent the most tender years of my youth
My home from the ages of 4-12
It was both hell and heaven
I knocked on the door
Felt strange knocking
I felt violated
Who was in my house?
In my bedroom
Did they know what the VV & KH carvings in the radiator stood for?
Did they know that my dad died right there on the floor between the kitchen and bathroom?
I wanted so badly to go in
And sit in that spot
Kiss the floor
Just lay there and cry
He opened the door just enough to poke his head out
I explained to him
That this was my place
And it would mean the world for me to come in
And just take a peek
He seem confused and unaffected by my emotion and hand gestures to my heart
I repeated myself
He stared at me trying to find the words to tell me no
He said perhaps another time
I asked him to take my number
He went to get a pen
And when he came back
The door opened wide
I could see the spot at the end of the hall…
The hall I had spent years running up and down
My mom yelling at me to stop
The dog chasing me
Kim slipping in a puddle of dog pee as she skipped…
Pretending to be the pope with a white sheet draped around her
At the end of that hall…
Is where my dad took his last breath…
Alone…
Probably scared…
And wondering if that is how he would die…
It was…
I said my number…
I knew he wouldn’t call…
So I stared at the spot…
At the end of the hall…
It seemed so far…
I wanted so badly to go in
And sit in that spot
Kiss the floor
Just lay there and cry

 

I wrote this a several months ago…but felt compelled to post something for my dad today… I love you papi..Happy Fathers Day! 
Your Babygirl…
Forever and always…
Vanessa
 
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May 30, 2009

I wonder…

 I wrote this a while ago, but a comment that was left on previous entry got me to thinking and this piece kind of sums up why it has been so hard for me.  Recently my aunt told me something that she thought would make things easier for me to understand, but I am not sure if it did more damage than good.  My grandfather was a son of a bitch to my father.  He always made my father feel like shit, and was extremely verbally abusive.  My father was like the black sheep of the children.  So my aunt tells me that my father was the result of a one night stand that my grandmother had with another man.  My grandfather forgave my grandmother and agreed to raise my father.  I guess he thought he would be able to do it, but unfortunately for my father, he wasn’t treated like the rest of the family. My father always seemed lost and hurt.  He was such an amazing man.  All the neighborhood kids loved him.  He was funny and just the type of man people wanted to be around…when he was sober.  He was fascinated with Chinese culture and taught himself how to speak and write Chinese.  He was a computer wiz.  He held a black belt in Kung Fu.  He played the trombone and the piano, and even performed with Tito Puente.  He was also a drug abuser, an alcoholic and extremely violent toward my mother when he was under the influence of either.  I loved him more than I will ever be able to express.  There is no poem that can do my feelings justice.  His death left me with a gaping hole in my heart.  What my aunt told me explained why my father seemed so damaged, why he always felt like he wasn’t good enough, and it explained the pain in his eyes.  But it also left me with a sense of feeling lost.  Who is the man that fathered my father?  Where do I really come from?  There are family members that I realize now are not even my blood family, because I really have no connection to the man I thought was my grandfather.  My grandmother died last year and took this information to her grave.  I am so mad at her for that.
My father died alone in our apartment.  He pounded on the walls for help, but there was always chaos coming from our apartment so his cries for help were ignored.  He called me the Friday before his death and asked me to come see him because he wasn’t sure he was going to make it through the weekend.  He always cried wolfe like that.  I didn’t go.  He died on Monday.  My soul has never recovered. 
Daddy
Daddy
Daddy
He gave me life...but left me broken.

He gave me life...but left me so broken.

I wonder why you loved me

But I didn’t feel it

I wonder why you wanted to nurture me

But killed me instead

I wonder why you hit mommy

And didn’t think you were hurting me

I wonder why you stood out all night

But were too tired to read me stories

I wonder why you did God knows what drugs

When they told you

You were dying

I wonder why you drank so much

When they told you

Your liver was drowning

I wonder why I wasn’t enough Daddy

Why my pleas fell on deaf ears

I wonder who hurt you Daddy

Who caused you so much pain

I wonder what you were running from

I wonder

Did your Daddy hurt you

The way that you hurt me

I wonder

Did you think of me Daddy

When you were dying

I wonder Daddy

Was I your last thought

I wonder why I need your arms around me Daddy

More than I’ve ever needed anything before

I wonder why I can’t accept your death

I wonder all these things Daddy

Things I will never know

I wonder why

May 29, 2009

I fucking wish…

i wish you were here daddy
i wish you had fought harder
your urges, your disease, your anger
i wish you read me stories
and came to all my plays
i looked for you in the audience daddy
but you were never there
i wish i wasnt scared of you daddy
and i wish you smiled more
i wish i could hear your voice
and you could hold my hand
i wish you saw the hope in my eyes
and i wish you saw it die daddy
each time you relapsed
i only wished it’d make you better
or at least make you want to be
i wish i never wished you dead
because none of the insurmountable wishes I’ve wished
could ever bring you back
i wish you hadnt died alone daddy
and i wish my heart didnt ache anymore
i wish there was someone or something
that could fill this void
i wish daddy, i fuckin wish
i just wish you were here
so i could tell you I dont give a fuck about all these wishes
i just wish i was wrapped in the safety of your arms
i’d cry and tell you how many nights i lied awake wishing for only this
i wish you could hold your 31 yr old baby like the first day
she cried her first cry
i wish daddy, i fucking wish
May 9, 2009

so broken

his memory is fading…
becoming vague…
i can hear his last words…
echoing deep…
within the hollow space in my heart…
the unfillable space he left…
an irreplaceable love never to be found…
no closure…
no happy ending…
no time to heal…
left with the god awful feeling…
of wanting…
what can never be had…
a fathers love…
a warm embrace…
from he who gave me life…
no choice…
but to be born into his life of misery…
a life that left me broken…
but still…
i miss my daddy…
his smile…
his big belly…
and his contagious laugh…
what i wouldn’t give…
for one last moment with you…
i miss you daddy…
i’m so broken…