I was watching Jada Pinkett- Smith’s show – Red Table Talk recently about forgiveness. It was a chat with her step brother about their father and how they both coped with his addiction and the fact that he wasn’t present for most of their growing up. They both discussed how they had learned to forgive him/his actions and how he ended up dying without much resolution of his “demons”.
What resonated mostly with me was when she said “my father’s main purpose in life was not to be my father, but to have a journey of his own and I just happened to be born during his journey so I couldn’t expect him to stop everything to be my father.”
My parents separated when I was in high school and it was an acrimonious split. I have lived more than half my life without talking to my father who probably lives in the same city I grew up in which is actually a VERY small place. Sometimes I question my emotions about the whole situation whether I am angry/upset/disappointed. Despite the decades, I am still unsure how I feel and what I would like to occur to resolve my indecisiveness. At some point you start dating, get married and walk yourself down the isle Meghan Markle style, have a child and work a career that you love but still not resolve that relationship and where it stands.
My father was not really into drugs or alcohol or anything that would make me think he was a bad father. It’s like my parents got separated and his parenthood also stopped. Obviously there is bias from my point of view given this transpired whilst I was technically still a child but that is what I experienced.
Hearing Jada and her brother say those words about their father gave me peace about my father and our situation. I hope one day, before it’s too late, we can both be adults about the situation but I have peace should that not eventuate too.