One phone call…

can really change your attitude.

Immediately after writing my last post I received an impromptu phone call from my father. He said “I just wanted to hear your voice”. This is never a good call to get from your parent. He proceeded to tell me that my grandfather is in the hospital and he might die. A rush of thoughts came to my brain, not emotions just thoughts, because for the man that was dying I would not waste my emotions. Here we have a man who, while being my flesh and blood relative, has never once acted like so. He has always been a mean, old, drunk. My father has told me stories about how Bud (my grandfather) treated him when he was younger and they would abhor most modern families. This man who is dying was never the patriarch he should have been. He disrespected my parents and myself quite often to the point that I haven’t spoken to the man in over ten years. At the thought of his death I feel no sadness in me. He lived his life as a joke with a tragic punchline. I see the grief he has caused my family and I feel no remorse for estranging myself from him. I will forever remember him as a lesser man who created a better man in my father. For this reason alone I thank my grandfather.

But at this moment I am called to his bedside, not to grieve his death but to care for my father who never had a good father of his own. I can see this weighing on him daily. He just wanted a father to care about him and he never had it. I want to tell my dad that he was ten times the man my grandfather was and a hundred times the father.

This is assuming he dies of course. If he does not (barring some miraculous change of personality) I will continue my estrangement until one of us leaves this earth. Because no matter what, this man was a pile of shit.

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