One of the survivors

When I returned from hospital, most of my remaining flowers had succumbed to frost.

But Fiddleneck, Sweet Alyssa, larkspur and the smaller of my two hollyhocks are still hanging on, for now.

Usually by now we would have had bitter cold.

And people still don’t believe in global warming.

But that’s not what I was going to write about.

In Catholic school, although I am not Christian, I was very aware of confession.

If you were Catholic, it cleared you of sin. Frankly, I thought it was all a bit too convenient. But that is a separate argument.

Personally, I think I always found it easier to confess or to apologize, rather than allowing some matter of conscience to fester in my gut.

The bothersome thing was that people sometimes dispute your confession. Perhaps they prefer to stay mad at you?

One time, at work I made an incorrect entry into the computer when I was creating a weight and balance sheet. It was a matter of a slight difference between aircraft types. When you handled two or three flights while fielding phone and radio calls, it was an easy enough trap to fall in and most of us did it one time or another.

The error caused something like a 3-minute delay.

Not a big thing, you would imagine. But you would be wrong.

Because, in this instance it was my fault, it was deemed a “Station Delay”. Oh no! Statistically it counted a number of demerits against us.

Now, if we could have lied about it and cast the blame elsewhere…who would have cared? 3 little minutes, who would even notice?

The thing was, though I won’t bore you with tedious details, it could have been cast elsewhere.

But I confessed!

And was made to squirm about it.

But that was just the corporate environment.

Morals didn’t seem to count for much, but it didn’t mean I had to compromise my personal ethics.

But where is all this leading?

To a personal confession: I am a horrible person. I harbor resentment. I had to acknowledge this yesterday and it did not make me proud.

Yesterday afternoon, Grant did a silly-fool damn thing.

He mashed the big toe on his right foot.

Did he do it on purpose? Well, hardly.

Though wearing sandals at the time was undoubtedly a little lame-brained. He of all people knows better.

But there he was, dripping blood everywhere and looking a bit shocked.

Blood doesn’t phase me too much but floating toe nails…

“Come, let’s go, you need to get that looked at.”

Amateur first aid could lead to tears.

So, for once I got to drive.

With the worst back seat driver of all time!

It’s seriously annoying.

That was not the problem.

Although it didn’t help!

From the minute I saw Grant limping from the garage with his bloody toe, a feeling stirred in the pit of my stomach.

Now, considering all the time Grant has spent waiting around for me, I could hardly resent the couple of hours I had to sit outside the urgent care office for him.

It gave me time to examine my conscience.

“What the hell is up with you?” I asked myself. “Where is this coming from?

It didn’t take that long to work out.

It still isn’t pretty, but a therapist explained it to me once.

As a child, my father had no five minutes to spare for me. He did not like children. Not even his own.

Fair enough, not all people do. But the minute I was old enough to be useful….and when he was widowed and alone, my being the un-married child as well as an airline employee with cheap tickets…you get the picture.

It was when Dad was diagnosed with cancer, after he had come back to the States to live near me that resentment really kicked in.

By then issues with my spine had become seriously painful and the hours spent sitting around and driving the old man back and forth were exhausting.

And taken totally for granted.

It preyed heavily on my conscience. This was my father. How could I be so mean as to begrudge him my time?

As my therapist put it, you can only give back the amount of love you’ve been given. I had no reserves to call on.

My father had, in different ways, seriously damaged my life and as a person, there wasn’t a lot to like.

Saying so hurts because I so wanted to love my Dad.

There were times when, in spite of everything, I was fond of him and when he died I cried, feeling so conflicted.

That was nearly 17 years ago and it doesn’t make me feel good that the resentment still comes up, inappropriately.

If I ever get reassigned to a new therapist, it’s something I could perhaps discuss.

8 thoughts on “Confessing

  1. I have had similar sentiments about my father. A military man, alcoholic, should never have been a parent, and I built up a lot of resentment over the years. Was with him when he died and I too, cried and felt the loss. Perhaps it is for the father we wish we had….
    I love your photos – especially the frost kissed flowers…
    Take good care of Grant – he seems like a treasure, and an amusing one at that…

  2. I don’t think you’re horrible … I think you are just way too honest about (or is it with?) yourself. I think for most of us there is a part of ourselves that we don’t like – but that don’t necessarily make you a bad/horrible person … even more so when there is a very obvious reason why you act the way you do!
    I’m glad you could get the chance to drive again (even with the world’s worst back seat driver 😉) – hope Grant’s toe is healing fast!

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