he won’t stop calling. i refused to answer his calls after my pain came back. i just couldn’t deal with the weight of him.
so, he calls, leaves manipulative messages in increasingly pitiful tones complete with cracking voice, “It’s dad. Call me. I just want to hear your voice. I love you.” and when i don’t call back, he starts calling my sister and telling her i must be dead or something.
One of my first memories of my father was when I was around three years old.
My mother was a beautician and she took particular pride in my long, blonde hair. It was probably close to the middle of my little back by the time I was three. My mother would do up my very straight hair in pin curls to give it a nice, tight wave, which was the style in the early 50s.
Anyway, I had decided that I wanted bangs. I have no recollection of why I wanted bangs, but this was of great importance to my little self. I asked Mom to cut my hair, but she told me that I had to ask my father’s permission. This made the necessity of bangs ever so much more serious.
I remember Mom walking me from the kitchen to the living room. Dad sat on the couch to my right and Mom, quietly on my left. I was a painfully shy child. The simple act of speaking was excruciating. Asking for something I deeply wanted, deadly. But I wanted this badly, so I mustered the courage and asked my father if I could have my hair cut in bangs.
Dad said no. I pleaded. He said no again. There may have been a spark of three year old defiance in my tone, I’m not sure, but he went on to say, “Do what you want, but if you cut your hair, you will no longer be my daughter.”
Whoa! If I cut my hair, I no longer have a father? So, my place in the world, my worth as a person, my very self hinges on the length of my hair? What does that make me? What am I? Even a three year old can figure that one.
I am nothing.
so, tell me old man, how much do you really love me? and tell me, why should i care?
i just want to be left alone. i just want to heal.