This is my Dad, his name is Robert. He is around 8 or 10. He’s one of at least 10 children. Very nice suit, cute smile and wild hair. You can’t pick your Parents, but this one was a rare gem in Fatherhood. I remember every day of his life since my birth. I will love him so dearly, till my last breath is taken. Of course he was 39 when he died, I was six. It still causes me extreme pain to type those words… How much could I know at 6, how much love could one person pack into six years? We lived every day as if it was our last day. By that time, I had competed in several talent contests, including “Little Miss Sunbeam” a bread company at that time. Traveled through Europe and been just LOVED to pieces. My Dad colored with me, played Barbie dolls with me and sang old songs I still remember today. What a hole in my life, the powerful presence that was inhabited by my Dad.
This is my parents wedding day…No doubt my Grandmother and Grandpa’s new wife where avoiding each other… I don’t think any pictures put them together…There was a bunch of stories including burning my Grandmother’s belongings left in the house in a bonefire on the front lawn of the Family home… in 1949. My parents got married in 1956. So my Mom had Ginger as her Stepmom for 7 years…Seven years of hiding her feelings and swallowing all the crap Ginger could shove at her…There relationship was not great, my Mom tolerated Ginger for the sake of my Grand Dad. Ginger wanted to be #1 and my Mom would always be #1 in my Grandfather’s heart. She was his only Daughter, his princess. I’m surprised my Grandmother did not fight it out with her. I’m surprised she walked out of that wedding with all her teeth and hair intact. Maybe details to follow….
So we have…My grandmother from Franklin, New Hampshire. With only her 8th grade education. Left school to help at home with her 11 other brother and sisters…And makes a little money for the family by cleaning homes.
Here is my Grandmother after being married retuning to the Family Homestead and greeting the family dog…That’s Grandma’s Side of the Family…
You go your way I go mine…Seems pretty normal. The rich guy who has to work his ass off, to prove to his Family “He is worthy”… Married to a bit of a “Party Girl” from the wrong side of the tracks. Eloped ????, what? We all know how this ends, but now there is a thirteen year old daughter, the only child, she has no one to rely on. No one to cry to. Loved sure, but not with tenderness, not being put first. A world of chaos, no shelter from the big bad world. The party girl lives on to party, the under appreciated broken man finds another woman way too fast, to fill the place where his wife and daughter once stood… That woman who was looking for love as well, and a full-walleted man, with this and that…seems wonderful. Then it happens again, marriage… For both My Grandmother and Grandfather…Torn down the middle, that’s the way it’s done in 1946. Make a choice between your Dad and you Mom. Dad’s home, your home, your privileged life or a run down apartment building, living close to the dampness of the river. Cold and empty..a working Mom and missing all you had known till now. In both cases seeing your parents with other people. In both cases they are drinking more than you witnessed before. Pain, all feeling pain. You are just learning the feeling of romantic love, if they don’t love each other any more do they still love you? Seeing your parents feel that romantic attaction for others. Not for each other anymore. Their caustic relationship growing, it must have jaded you in some way. You have to shut down a lot of emotion. Close off the hurting parts. Watching your life running out of you, to the ground, and seeing the muddy puddle that used to be somewhat nice, it was your life. Hard for you to understand. Keep trying to please both parents. Diplomatic, cautious, think before you say anything. I am sure she is a very confused 13-year-old to say the least.