This shouldn’t hurt as much as it does
Okay … I won’t hide it … this is really pissing me off. You may remember my posts from a week or so ago when my office line rang with the caller ID flashing my father’s number; the father I was told was deceased several years past. I was told I wasn’t welcome at the funeral so I didn’t go. I hadn’t spoken to the man in several years and his wife *hated* me so I just left it alone, grieved in my own strange way, and came to terms with the loss….as it was. Then, out of the blue, my phone rings with my dead father’s phone number and name and no one leaves a message. They ring back a few minutes later and this time, along with a great deal of static and movement, I heard my mother’s voice, clear as day:
“That is not her voice….” *click*
What my mother would be doing at my father’s home (her ex husband of nearly 20 years and sworn enemy in life) was baffling, to say the least. Neither of them set foot in each other’s home in all the years they’ve been divorced, and it would take a huge event for it to happen by force. But then, if my father was already dead, the idea of my mother hanging out with his second wife (also not so much friends, you know?) is even more baffling. Why she then chose to call me from his line is stranger still…why not call me from her house when she could collect herself and not be so tense. Of course, she may not have wanted me to be found….I guess that makes sense. Sort of.
So that’s the recap. I had all kinds of horror stories brewing in my head that weekend…waiting for something to happen. My old phone line is disconnected so they wouldn’t be able to call me there, but both siblings have my email addresses and they surely would have written if something tragic happened. I figured, if it was important, they would write, or send a note in the mail maybe? Worse case I feared they would simply turn up at my house that weekend bearing whatever news they had to share. No one came though. No one sent anything in the mail. For whatever reason, my family made a single, half-arsed attempt to contact me and when they reached me my mother decided it wasn’t my voice on the line. That kind of breaks my heart as I recognized her voice instantly even though it wasn’t clear on the message. How did she not know it was me? Dayne thinks she knew well enough it was me but didn’t want my father’s wife to know. (??? WHY is kind of beyond me).
The last time I spoke to my mother was several years ago on my birthday. She rang me at work and on impulse, I picked up the phone.
“Hi mom?” I said
“Hello. I was just calling to wish you a Happy Birthday. I love you!” she fell into tears then and hung up on me.
I called back several times but she wouldn’t pick up. I was in the midst of my mental collapse then and her intrusion drove me to tears. I went home for the day and cried until my head was pounding and then I slept until the following day, curled in a ball in the back storage room of my house. And then this. She calls, hears me, declares it’s not me and hangs up. And they didn’t even try to reach me otherwise.
I have weird, conflicting feelings on this. First, I wonder if my father is alive…or dying…or just recently dead rather than long dead like I was told. They could have just let me assume he didn’t want to talk to me from the way he flipped me the bird and told me to get the fuck out of his life the last time we spoke….they didn’t need to lie to keep me away. Second, if he IS alive (or was, recently) why would he want to talk to me? My heart (stupid, stupid heart) hopes he wanted to make amends or say goodbye but in all likelihood, he just wanted to either take one last swipe at me or wanted to see his grandson, whom he also abandoned over nothing at all. These are the only reasons I can fathom that my mother would be over there. She *might* have gone with my sister, who would be too afraid to go on her own, if dad was dying. But then, why didn’t they leave me a message? My voice mail is quite obviously me, plus, neither my first nor last name are spelled in the way you would expect. I’m the only one in my entire workplace so the likelihood of it not being me is pretty great.
So I’m left with this. Nothing. They tried twice to reach me by phone, same number, and decided it wasn’t me. They tried nothing else. My mother was the only one who made the attempt and she sounded, for all the world, like she did NOT want to talk to me, even in tone alone. I still live at the same address I did when we were last in touch… still work at the same place. Why couldn’t they just leave me the hell alone if they weren’t even going to try to get in touch? ? ? It makes me feel even more worthless than usual.
I did call back, three times. I wasn’t going to but the curiosity was killing me and I was so afraid I might miss the only chance I might have to hear my father say he loved me, after all was said and done. The abuse…the sexual abuse, specifically, is not ever going to be forgiven, but I would have liked to have heard that I meant something to him, after all that drama. It was so long ago. I left my cell number at my dad’s machine….and my mom’s machine. Two messages and no one called me back. Not even a ring-hangup call….nothing. I was about to email my siblings but decided against it, thinking that one of my messages would get a return but nope. Silent treatment. I can just hear them in my mind saying “That’s what you deserve!” or my father’s thick, Scottish voice telling me he no longer thought of me and that I was no longer (never was) his daughter.
Why did they try only to not respond? Why did they call if they were just going to ignore me? What would they have done if I had been in my office and picked up the phone? Dayne thinks they’d just have hung up on me, like before. I just don’t get why you would do that to someone.
I feel like I did as a 80 pound kid, sitting on a busy street, back against the train station wall, watching cars and people go by as they ignored my tears dripping from my face. I had nowhere to go, no one to go home to…no home to go to at all. All on my own, terrified and so desperately lonely. I’d never felt so alone. The echoes of that are still inside me and sometimes, like now, they almost overwhelm and take over.
I’ve come so far from there, but they can take me back; take me down, so fast. Makes me feel like I’m only fooling myself. Or…maybe even not so much.