Ever since my Thin Line piece was published, I’ve been feeling guilty about not telling you the whole story.
Here’s the first part, in case you missed it.
My dad turned sixty-four today. My son and I showed up at his door this morning with a dozen fresh birthday donuts. He greeted us with a wonderful smile and a big warm hug. He teared up a little bit too. I’m sitting here unable to control my tears running down my face because that’s a huge improvement from a few years ago. I didn’t even know my body was having an emotional reaction until I realized my face was wet.
It’s about time. — Time to release all those toxins I’ve stuffed down inside of me for the last three years. I am grateful for getting to see him on his birthday. Like, really see him.
I feel like I got a little bit of my dad back today.
Sure, there were traumatic moments in my childhood. But most of the time, I was overwhelmed with how much my parents loved me. Every day I was flooded with how much they cared.
I truly felt like I was on top of the world when I was with my dad. Sure. I had moments where I thought I hated him (spanning from the age of twelve to eighteen like every other teenage girl on their period). But looking back, I was always safe. I was always loved.
I am feeling so much right now.
The only way I can manage to process everything is to make a list of all the reasons why my dad’s OCD is one of the best things that could ever happen to me. It shaped me into the woman I am today, and for that, I am forever grateful.
5 Reasons Why There’s A Bright Side To My Dad’s Mental Illness
- His severe anxiety made him hyperaware, and the most vigilant father a daughter could ever be so incredibly blessed to have.
- He was the most empathetic man I knew but took shit from no one when it came to his family. He was already overwhelmed with his obsessive thoughts of doing the right by us.
- His OCD caused him to be overly diligent in everything he did. He was present and emotionally available when it came to spending time with us.
- He was always there. (Even when I didn’t want him to be)
- Being an imperfect parent made him a good one. The best, in my opinion.
That’s all I can emotionally churn out right now.
Thank you for listening. ❤ D
A few more stories you may enjoy:
I Came Out To My Parents When I Was Sixteen
My Mom said she always knew. My dad wanted to disown me.