My Yearly Whine/Rant About my Heritage

Every year I tell this story. I’m not sure if I’m trying to come to a conclusion, or just a better perspective of the situation.  Bear with me, as I attempt to figure it out.

I was born in 1954, and two yrs later, my parents divorced. I never knew my father. I have no memories of him that come to me.   It was a nasty seperation, from what I can get from my mom. She remarried, and, from that point on, we didn’t speak of my father. I liken it to Lord Voldermort, in the Harry Potter series… ” he who must not be named”… I did learn that there was going to be a sharing of me, but, after he remarried, his wife put a quick halt to that. Absolutely no communication with me was the new rule. For what reason I do not know, he complied. I never saw him again.

He was full blood Irish. A member of the Irish Marching Society, here in town.  I always wondered how the Timothy Michael mashed up with the not Irish name. It explains a lot to me. Blood and genetics are much thicker than I thought.  Some things I have been drawn to, and aspects of my personality are now much more clear. Go figure…

Fast forward to my adult years. In my 30’s, I wondered where my father was.  Since he had made no attempt to contact me, I took it to mean that he had no desire to find out what I had become. I checked the local phone book on a whim, and to my surprise, he lived 6 blocks away from where I was renting an apartment.  I was curious, so I drove by a couple times, on the chance he would be out. No, he wasn’t ,but, I did discover that we drove the same car. Mmmmm, same neighborhood, same car…. This is a bit spooky… I never stopped to see him, thinking that he wasn’t interested.

Several years later, we were watching the 6 o’clock news. A house fire was covered, where the man of the house, perished. They then gave the name of the victim. Wait! I should know that name… I do… It was my father. Even without seeing him for over 45 years, it brought me to a standstill.  This is surreal, though I’m not the one who just died, or lost a husband or father I knew.  Guess the decision to make contact or not, has been decided now.

My wife and my sister, who is a half sister, different fathers, decided to go to the visitation to see the people who didn’t want to see me, ever… Not to cause trouble, but out of curiousity.  They went. It was a bit odd, but everyone survived it. I did not go, because I didn’t want to stir up any animosities to go with the grief they were feeling. Also because I wasn’t sure how I felt about the whole thing. One half sister, same father, didn’t know I existed. “we’ll have to get together”… I texted her a couple times, giving her an out of not actually talking to me. She never did…

It does kind of nibble at me… What if… What if we spoke or reconciled. What if one of us had made the move. Would anything be different?  Would either of us be better for it, or would things be better left alone. A half a century is a long time to try and make up for, or change. Some things are better left alone…. Is that an excuse or common sense?   Never getting the chance to ask “how come” to him? Would either one of us come to a better place for that?

The one point that over and over shakes the foundation is this… As my wife was at the visitation talking to the sister that didn’t know I existed, the sister said, ” ah, now I know who the picture of the little boy named Timmy was, on my father’s dresser”!  Whew…. Changes my perspective of it all, or at least shakes it up quite a bit.

No fair…

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