last night i was avoiding my father. he called and i didn't answered. i just didn't feel like it. see my dad rambles. and he mumbles. and he slurs. and he talks real fast so that i can't understand what he's saying.
he's a vietnam veteran. with post tramautic stress syndrome. and a mean off-and-on drug addiction.
this is my father.
he and my mom divorced when i was about 8 and thankfully i had a sometimes annoying but none-the-less-there stepfather who has not hesitated to do anything within his power for me and my sisters. thank God for him.
meanwhile my father was absent for much of my growing up, although we saw him every now and then through the years. just recently in the last 5 years, my contact with him has been more frequent and i've grown to understand who he is and what he couldn't be with such clarity that at times i deal with him not as my father but as a dear old man who i am fond of.
so when i was startled awake by my sister calling me at 6am this morning I was shocked at what she had to say.
her baby's father is dead.
and i cried.
those who know the back story would be a little surprised that i cried. because dude has not won any baby daddy of the year awards in the 5 years my beautiful wonderful smart funny cool-ass niece has been on this earth. he's ducked and dodged and a few years ago was laid up on a ventilator after being shot several times.
but i cried for his soul, for my sister, for baby daddy's family, and most of all for my niece who has lost her father. who she adored despite his absences. whose height she has. whose aunt's gap she has.
and in my mind i connect her loss with my loss of my father to war and drugs.
how will this change her? some shit she aint want no parts to. she want her daddy. always.
R.I.P. Young Man