What do we do when sadness comes a knocking? At times, all of us have something that makes us feel like hiding away in sadness. Often it’s a loss of something, a relationship, a loved one, our finances, or perhaps something that just ‘might have been’ but wasn’t.
My deepest sadness is the loss of my father. He is still alive but doesn’t want to be in my life. The rejection is palpable.
He was my hero right up into my twenties, and my loss of him in my life hurts so incredibly deeply. He has missed out on the best of me. He raised a charismatic, driven woman who has learnt how to be a mother, wife, business owner, leader and so much more since he checked out. When I’m swallowed up in rejection, it is easy to think how sad it is that he has missed out on this wonderful person he raised. As much as I try to understand it and come up with different scenario’s as to how this is OK with him, I cannot ever find one that is satisfactory. I just have to accept it. Accept that this is the way it is. I struggle. How can his love for me not override whatever it is that stops him from being in my life. I am a mother, I know the love of a parent.
With a deep sadness, especially when we have little, to no control over, that tips some of us into a low period or even depression. It’s very different to other issues that can be worked through.
I get stuck on this one with my Dad, I guess because I refuse to be OK with the way things are. It doesn’t matter how old you are, rejection from a parent hurts to the core, and it continues to raise its ugly head.
What do I do to get through it?
I let my feelings come and go, like the visitors they are. I usually spend a week or so feeling like utter shit, and having the same conversations with my husband, Mother and friends. I am so grateful I have these people who listen to that same conversation over and over. I always come to the same point: pity. I pity him for missing out on knowing my amazing family, and receiving unconditional ‘Grandad’ love from my beautiful children, and making a good friend in my husband, and watching me develop more and more every year into the vivacious woman I am. What a shame for him.
Father’s Day brings up so many emotions every year. But I make a conscious effort to find gratitude in the men I already have in my life. I married one of the best examples of a father I have ever known. The relationship he has with our children is absolute gold to witness, he effortlessly makes them feel loved, important and special to him. It’s not surprising because of his Dad, my Father in-law, is a wonderful father too. He is one of my many blessings. He has been the best father figure a daughter in-law could ask for.
Not fighting the sadness is helpful to me, just letting it come and go; talking is good for me too, it helps me process the sadness. Gratitude helps me see what is there, instead of what isn’t. It is gratitude that puts a hand out and hauls me back up on days like today, Fathers Day.