Father's Day is so bittersweet for me as I have many painful feelings associated with my biological father. Story I've been told is that I was madly in love with my daddy when I was tiny, and then he abandoned our family when I was 3. I remember the fight over custody, and it is one of my earliest, and most terrifying, memories. I didn't see my dad again until I was 11. He came back for a grand total of 24 hours, making all kinds of promises to me. We were super poor, and I wanted a bike more than anything, as my old one had been stolen. He promised to buy me a bike. I remember the next day at school how I felt. So excited and overwhelmed with joy. I ran out to my mom's car after school and she was all by her self. I asked, "Where is dad?" She answered, "He left." I WAS DEVASTATED. I felt like such a fool, for trusting him so easily.
A year later he came back for a visit and I refused to talk to him. So he left again, blaming my coldness. When I was 13, he came back again. I finally caught on that he was trying to get my mom to take him back. I was having none of that! I went on a week long camping trip with my best friend and I cautioned my mom before I left to not fall for his schemes. I came home and he had moved into our house. That was a disaster. I felt so uncomfortable and pretty unsafe having him in our home. A few months later, he punched me in the face so hard that he knocked me over. I fell into a deep depression, and my older brother reached out to me. He told me if I ever needed a place to stay, I was always welcome to stay at his house, with him, his wife, and their 2 little children. I took him up on his offer shortly thereafter. I moved out of my mom's house when I was 14, and went through the courts to get myself emancipated. My mom fought it, but I won. My brother became my custodial guardian until I turned 18.
When I was 15 my dad started coming to my work to try and get me to talk to him. At first I resisted it and wouldn't talk to him, but eventually he wore me down. We started getting to know each other again, and spending quality time together. I really grew to love my father during this time. It was nice to see where some of my personality and other quirks came from. When I was 16 my dad moved away suddenly without telling me and I couldn't get a hold of him. He just disappeared. I WAS DEVASTATED. About 6 months later, I got a phone call from a woman telling me my father was in the hospital and was going to die. Would I go and see him? I did, and I made my peace with him before he died. I told him that I forgave him for everything. I read him the love chapter from the Bible, I Corinthians 13. I sang "Amazing Grace" to him. I wanted him to be at peace. He died the next day. April 2, 1994.
Due to all this sordid, convoluted history it has been a lifelong vow of mine that I would have babies with a man who would be a wonderful father to them. Ever since I first met Aurelien in 1997, when I was a nanny to his cousins, I have observed his soft heart and gentle way with children. That is one of the biggest reasons why I fell for him back then, and why I continue to fall in love with him more and more every day. He is the daddy of my dreams for our child. William is incredibly blessed to have such an amazing human being as his very own father. I wish I could have had a daddy like that. But having a daddy like that for my beloved William is a close second!!!
Here is the gift that I made for Aurelien last year. It is an altered Tim Holtz Assemblage Clock. I altered it with gesso, paint, alcohol inks, assemblage parts, a photo, and a tiny Tim Holtz lantern to illuminate the photo. This year I am painting a big canvas for him which is just about done. I will probably post pictures of that next year on father's day!