Tuesday, 1 July 2008

The 'F' word...

Let me know how you feel when you read these quotes:

I love my father as the stars - he's a bright shining example and a happy twinkling in my heart. ~Adabella Radici

There's something like a line of gold thread running through a man's words when he talks to his daughter, and gradually over the years it gets to be long enough for you to pick up in your hands and weave into a cloth that feels like love itself. ~John Gregory Brown, Decorations in a Ruined Cemetery, 1994

If you're like me you'll roll your eyes and mutter, "Yeah, right...".

But, occasionally I come across people - often through blogs, and quite possibly through fictional movies... - who have a great relationship with their dad! And I'm amazed. I can't quite comprehend it. I mean, my dad isn't a bastard, some evil horrid person. He just was never much interested in me. No cuddles or advice; no warm support. Mum would have to pester him to spend time with me. So, no warm-and-fuzzies like some people seem to have. No strong, reliable or emotionally connected head-of-family.

The other day, on the phone to my mum, I mentioned to her that I was starting to wonder if other people actually had 'real' dads. You know, how dads are supposed to be: Loving, supportive, spend time with you and are interested in you, create a safe place for you. You feel he's someone strong and caring who you can rely on and... well... he's someone who obviously loves you. You are special and have an important place in his heart. I told mum I was beginning to be suspicious that these men actually existed. She said no way. She couldn't fathom that at all. Obviously a completely foreign concept to her too.

So, as it's stuck in my head, I thought I'd put it out there to you lot and see if any of you feel you have a wonderful dad. You know, one with all the good stuff! Or, do you know of any in existence?
I find it hard to believe... but, I just have to ask!

The place of the father in the modern suburban family is a very small one, particularly if he plays golf. ~Bertrand Russell

[This has also come up because someone recently pointed out to me what I'd been missing from my father - as if these nice, fatherly things could have and should have been provided. What the...! Really? And also because I'm reading A. S. Byatt's 'The Shadow of the Sun' which has a similarly distant father.]