Monday, June 18, 2007

Happy Day After Father's Day

This has been a very painful weekend for me. I lost my boyfriend. No, he didn't die, just wrote me out of his life, which is worse in many ways. I can't come to grips with it somehow, and even though we've split many, many times - so many that it's a constant source of amusement for several well-meaning friends - this time I know it's forever. So bear with me, as I am very melancholy at the moment.

I also have been grappling with the first Father's Day without my dad. He died last October 12, and I have survived my first Christmas without him, my first birthday without him, his first birthday without him, etc. without totally losing my shit. But Father's Day has been different. I've somewhat lost my shit. Maybe it's the combined loss of Paul and the emptiness already in my heart from losing Dad, maybe it's just hearing and feeling the word 'father' all week, but something very heavy has crawled inside my heart and seems rather reluctant to leave.

I just posted a comment on another blog about my dad's love of country music. While it made me feel good about how much he gave me during his life, it also made me start to cry again. I just want to share a little of it here, for Dad.

My dad was from East Tennessee (always ‘east’, never just ‘Tennessee’) and loved country music. Now, when I say country music, I don’t mean this bullshit Hollywood crap they pass off as country now. I mean country and western old style - Loretta Lynn, Chet Atkins, Johnny Cash, Merle Haggard, Flatt and Scruggs, Tammy Wynette. He had a wild streak, too, that mellowed once he married my mom and had us kids. But he was always a mischevious East Tennesseean at heart. I love country music, especially a good fiddle tune, thanks to him.

My parents were an odd match - mom very prim and proper and classically trained in piano, Dad a juvenile delinquent (in a good way, of course) from one of the best families of Knoxville, a family that since has been traced back to William the Conqueror, if you believe my aunts' geneaology searches. But they had an incredible relationship, the strength of which I only realized after Dad's death. They were soulmates, and having been together since they were 15, they knew each other better than anyone else. My mom is lost without him, something which surprises me as she always seemed so independent and cheerful, regardless of what happened around her. I am finding that I am somewhat lost without him, too, especially as I face divorce knowing that there is no one waiting for me on the other side.

I guess your father is your first love, and all others are based on him. I miss him terribly, and now realize that I will never have anyone love me as unconditionally and as deeply as he did. I have tried to find that love in many men since I left home to go to college and then on into the world as an adult. I see now that it can't be done. No one can take his place.

I apologize for the pity party. It has been a very black day.


Squeebee said...

I am so sorry for your losses, Loolie.

caryl said...

You never said anything, Julie. I didn't know you lost our Dad in October. I'm so sorry.

Since I'm going through a similar sucky time in my life, I don't know what to say. I'm also looking for that salve to heal a broken heart.

I think you and I found solace in the same place for a while but even that became another loss. If it's any comfort, just know that I understand some of what you're feeling. You're not alone.

Sending you a hug.

Dr. Maldoror said...

Hang in there.

You sound like a lady who could use a drink and a vacation.

I love that family picture, and I love Loretta Lynn... East Tennessee is a mythic place, isn't it? Flannery O'Connor was good about making that verbal/vocal distinction. You could hear both capital letters in East Tennessee.

Julie said...

Thanks, everybody. I appreciate the friendships I have online and in real life and the love I get from both. Y'all rock.

Chicken & Waffles said...

I lost my Dad four years ago and well, you're right on. It's the most intensely painful loss. A girl's Dad is the standard, the benchmark by which all men in your life are measured. I've yet to meet a man like my Dad. I'm sorry for your loss, darling Jules.

And I'm sorry about Paul.

You're an exceptional soul--know that you have your fans and admirers who think you walk on water.


Peanut said...

Julie, I know that my words can't heal or fix the pain you're going through. But I want you to know that you are strong and beautiful. I envy all that you've accomplished (and are are finishing up your Doctorate!) Keep blogging if it helps you sort through your feelings. I heart you!

Julie said...

CW you are sweet, and I appreciate the thought, but NO ONE thinks I walk on water! (shhhhh!)

rachel said...

Dear Julie

Just been looking at your blogs. I was very sorry to hear about your Dad. Losing a parent, and therefore that deep unconditional love, is devastating. You feel about 10 years older over night .....

Sorry also to hear about your relationship.

I know we have never met but you seem like a very cool woman who I enjoy interneting with.

Hope you are feeling a bit happier now. Sending you some good vibes.

El Mundo