Friday, December 23, 2005

Talking To My Father

By some strange twist of fate, my packages arrived from my father with a small wooden baby jesus enclosed. Being a known atheist, this freaked me out a little because I thought that my father was preaching Christianity in some weird, silent, voodoo way. Talking to Dad is a task I never like and always avoid. If I wanted to know anything about the wooden Jesus, I would have to break down and call him.

So I called and mercifully got the machine. My father doesn't believe in voicemail because you pay for it again and again when you only pay for a machine once. I don't know how he reconciles the voicemail on his cell because the explanation would take him all day and I don't have the minutes required. I left a message on his answering machine, which has the computerized voice because my father is extra paranoid, and, after the beep, asked if he had intended for me to have this Christ or if he was the owner of a very empty creche. I hung up and forgot about it.

At midnight his time he called me back (which is very late for my dad).

"Christina, it's Dad," he said as he always does. He was very happy to find out that the baby Jesus who had been lost 3 years ago had turned up in the packaging of my presents! It was a little creepy. Thinking of a missing olive wood creche Jesus waiting three years and 2500 miles to turn up in my house at Christmastime made me revisit my protestant roots for a moment. The Jesus and the rest of the creche belonged to my Dad's wife and she had gotten the whole thing in Jordan and it was very special. I couldn't resist making 'once was lost but now it's found' jokes. He laughed. He can be a good sport about most things.

I was feeling pretty good about the whole thing and promised to mail Jesus back to his manger when my father began talking about how well my brother is doing. I have heard no information about my brother since I told my family about the molestation last May. All of the sudden, my father is telling me that he has a new, healthy hobby, he's not drinking, he's doing really well.

And I felt like screaming, "yeah, but he still molested me repeatedly and you're acting like it's a hangnail!"

I'm mailing the Jesus tomorrow. I should have screamed.


Blogger Steaming Dragon said...

Instead of screaming it, you could have asked the very same question, in a quiet voice. Preluded with "I don't understand, why..."

Your father is not trying to hurt you.
He may not even now be aware that he hurt you with that call.

All he was doing was trying to reach a point of commonality with you.

I base this not on knowing your father, but upon my own experience in trying to reach my own children.
So, I might be all wrong here.

You didn't scream, therefore you maintained control.
Now, shake it off, and relax. Ya done good, Red...

24/12/05 3:01 AM  
Blogger Steaming Dragon said...

Hope you had a Merry Christmas, Christina.

25/12/05 3:52 PM  

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