When his back arches and his arm curves backwards I think nothing of it. Innocent, even at fourteen years, I wait for his aggravated retreat, for his arm to return to his sides with a loud clap upon his thigh. I'm sweating from the unbearable heat from all the boilers on with the winter outside and my face is moist even before it happens.
This man had for so long been swinging his arms. Twice upon my mother, more on my sister for the mysterious bump that had appeared above her waist, and the boy who keeps coming in the back door at night, and once for the eldest brother, who shined his boots last night and went to mend a war.
I'm getting it for the holly at Keith's front door. For blushing. For letting "god knows who see me with my lips twisted all up on that bad ass little boy." But the kiss made me tingle. As soon as his lips hit mine, I could tell he'd been waiting for Christmas and holly for a long long time.
That kiss was the warmest feeling I'd had in my entire life, his hands on my back, my fingers on his neck.
That kiss enlightens.
His slap just stings.
That is the last memory I have of or with my father. So on May 9, 2009, I began a journal for my father, whom I hadn’t seen, and even now have not seen, since I was 13. But he is not dead, or in a home, or lost. I know where he is, and what he looks like, but what I don’t know is how to talk to him. I know a letter that is not answered makes more of a story than one that was never sent to begin with, but there’s still a chance this is worth your while.
It’s important that you understand this part of me perfectly because just as the presence of my mother made me, so did the absence of my father.
All I ask is that you don’t pity me, or judge me, or compare my relationship to yours, because I’m not doing this for sympathy or words of wisdom. I’m doing it to open your eyes to another life; another possibility. Everyone thinks you either hate, love, or fall somewhere in the middle. But some people just forget. I think that’s what I’ve done. I’ve forgotten what it was like to be happy with him. I’ve taken advantage of having the chance to replace him. And in the process of growing apart, I may have forgotten to grow up.
May 9, 2009
I thought about you today. I want to say I thought about calling you, but I didn’t. I decided to start this instead. Hopefully, one day I’ll be able to give this to you and things will be clear.
I still love you, but not the way I should. To me, you are as much a father to me as a cloud is made of water; nearly impossible to keep form, unpredictable in your actions, and often giving depressing results.
Somewhere along the way we lost what little bit we had in each other and at first I looked to find it again, but now I have accepted that it is just not there.
In the last year I have prayed for us to return to the way we were. Chanted for the clock to turn back. Time, however, only continued.
It is a sad place where a daughter can be fatherless when the father is alive and well and has a phone easily to be used for communication.
Not that it matters anyway. Our most recent talks were empty, filled with questions of our days and your wife. How I loathe the words “my wife.”
Does that make her seem more meaningful to you? Do you use wife as a term of endearment or just to make it clear you have moved on past my mother? Because maybe, in moving on past her, you moved past me as well.
I mean, when I found out about her, I was being invited to a wedding. How could I possibly have been happy for you when I didn’t even have an idea as to who this woman was? Or that it meant a new sister? How was I to know of her evil intentions?
Yes, evil. What kind of woman sits back and lets her husband replace his children with her own? One whose only hope is to steal him away indefinitely. Well she can have you. Really.
I’ve learned by now that saying goodbye is much easier to say to you than see you later.
I should really say this to you in person but I’m too weak to do so. My best friend Jake tried to help me call you last night, but I chickened out. I thank god I have him to cry on and share my feelings with. I really love him. At least that much you can know.
|Amanda Seyfried||as Tinsel Delaney|
|Ryan Reynolds||as Drew|
|Shia LaBeouf||as Eddie|
|Jesse Eisenberg||as Samuel G|