GROWING UP FATHERLESS. Lessons I learnt. ~ ElijahForce

Thursday, 13 June 2013

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Growing up Fatherless, lessons I learnt.
father, lifestyle
I knew my father for only 13 years . The first 13 years of my life. I knew him as a troubled man, a man with very short temper and a man who really didn't love anyone or himself. I knew him as a man who you never wanted to cross paths with, because he never forgave a wrong, he never forgot to revenge. My parents had been in a battle for as long as I could remember over what I didn't really know. It always ended with my mum crying and cursing.

Eventually it happened , we came back home and we didn't find dad, he had left and we didn’t know where he was. He didn't want to be found, that was it. Few weeks after that, we realized he had sold the house we lived in and we had to move out within a space of 2 days.We had to live with friends till we found a place of our own. That was 17 years ago. I grew up fatherless, not one day hearing from him or seeing him, it was like he died and the memory of him began to die. Here are lessons I learnt from growing up fatherless.


1# Having a caring father is a plus but at the end of the  day, only you determine how your life is going to be.

My father was not totally useless, even though he abandoned us and never showed up in our lives. He was useful as a bad example. He was someone I never wanted to be, and so every day I woke up with the renewed zeal to thread a different path. He was a drunk, I never tasted alcohol, he was a wife beater, I never even fought with women, he was temperamental, I went for anger management classes. He  hated spirituality, i found my purpose in the spirit world. A lot of people let their parent’s fault determine their lives. They hate their parents because of their faults instead of battling those exact same faults in themselves. It is a known fact that most kids from dysfunctional homes end up in dysfunctional homes themselves.

2# Faster mental maturity become inevitable.

Being the only male in the house, I had to immediately step up and handle manly duties. I became a husband to my mum, I handled all manly duties around the house. I became mentally more matured than all my friends . I had to learn to make money for myself and my family, to manage the little we had at all times . I made mistakes and learnt from them immediately. I had help from uncles, neighbors and community but at the end of the day. I’m still more mentally matured than most of my mates.

#3 The emptiness never goes away.

There was a construction site down the street when I was about 14 years old. My cousins and I used to go there everyday after school and hang around a crane operator named James. He would talk to us and ask us about school and show an interest in us. He would waddle boats out of pieces of wood and put them in the standing water. When he said this is what he did with his own kids a wave of jealousy went right through my soul. I looked forward to seeing James everyday. One day he told us tomorrow was his last day and he would be leaving. He took us all out for ice cream. I was so emotionally sick I refused to have any. I went back the next day and he was gone. I cried for a week. The emptiness that I felt that day has never gone away. I am married with children who I love very much and have willingly sacrificed for to give them the best life possible, but the emptiness has never subsided. I was given a taste of what having a father would have been like and I know what I missed out on.

#4 Being a man isn't a matter of physical strength

 or how much you can drink and mouth off in the bar, it’s a matter of doing the best you can and treating people with respect, and being there for your family. I learned how to do my own home renos and repairs,  how to cook for the entire family when needed, and how to support my kids in their activities and interests.

#5 There would always be other fathers.

I have come to realize that there would always be fathers, there would always be men at one time or the other that would fill the gap of a father in your life. Nature has it's way of ensuring that, they may not be there for a long time, like a  biological father would but they would be there , when it matters the most. It may be hard when you are young and in your teens but as you grow older, you have to find those fathers yourself, they may be inspirational speakers, television characters, talk show hosts, pastors, blog writers or the old man in the neighborhood. They may not know you directly but their words, their materials, their charisma and character would influence you to be a better person.

#6 I've learnt to vote for me.

All my life,I've always tried to measure up, to take care of everyone, my siblings, my cousins, because everyone always told me to be a man. I've always put my emotions, hurts and feelings inside while trying to ensure that everyone was okay. It happened with my mum but now, i realized, that i was hurt being in that house, experiencing all that fight, watching my mum get beat down and i can't carry it on with me anymore. I had to open my heart, talk about my pain and HEAL!

Most importantly I know, I would never allow my kids to grow up fatherless, even if I die, I have friends who could be father figures for my kids.