As anyone who’s been following my blog for very long will realize, today completes my 57th lap around our sun. Nothing very special about that, at least in my opinion.
Through the course of the day, I was called with birthday greetings by my dad and my daughter, at different times (of course). When dad called, he suggested the possibility that he might be traveling into town (he lives in a very small town about 17 miles away) today, and if he did he’d stop by for a cup of coffee. I welcomed him completely.
Please remember that I’ve not only written here several times, but I’ve also told him several times, that I do NOT in any way, shape, or form, appreciate his willingness to be a conduit for my mother’s efforts to reestablish contact with me. I’ve told him over, and over, exactly why I discontinued talking to her, and that IMHO she’s already dead. Mostly because she specifically stated that she wished ME dead as a preferred option to being an adult who made choices she didn’t approve of. Still, every year when he called for my birthday, he also relayed the expressed birthday wishes of my mother. Last year, I told him that I didn’t care what he did with her, but I did NOT want him to ever relay that message again.
This morning when he called, he wished me “Happy Birthday” just like usual, but did not attempt to relay a message from my mom. Instead, he suggested that he might be coming to town, and would like to share a cup of coffee. I was happy to oblige. I very rarely get visitors.
I should have known better. I know, I already said that. Still, whether you call it optimistic, naive, or even dim-witted, I hoped for a good visit with my dad.
One of the first things he did when I opened the door for him was produce an envelope, addressed to me in care of him, from my mother. He said, “I hope you’ll accept this in the spirit that I believe it is offered in.” I immediately threw it in the trash, right in front of him. He expressed confusion, and suggested that I might actually want to open it before tossing it away. I had to explain, yet again, that no matter what I ever felt for her, I can’t erase the pain of hearing her say, “I’d rather you were dead than a member of (that cult).” I was 36 years old when that happened. The day she said that was the day she died as my mother. IMHO, every effort she’s made since to regain a relationship with me has just been her insistence on having the last word.
Still, I’m uncertain about leaving that letter in the trash. Is there anything she could say, that I’d actually trust to be the truth, that could be a step at healing that deliberately inflicted injury? I doubt it, but not 100%. I don’t want to open it, but a small part of me believes that I should.
What do YOU think?