I met with my dad today. For the first time in 25 years. Technically it’s only been 15 years. But as I told him, that one time didn’t really count.
He lives on a small farm. It’s adorable. My mom would’ve loved it. But they’re divorced. So probably not so much these days. It was the first time I was able to see why my mom and dad were in love at one point.
I’ve been messaging with my dad for the past few years. He had a stroke 10 years ago. He wobbles when he walks but is mentally very sharp. He’s funny. Kind. He likes coffee with freshly ground beans, and his wife makes a nice spiced cake.
I last saw him when I was 8. Most of my memories from those days are gone. So it was nice to catch up and to be given a chance to get to know my dad.
I learned where he went to school. What he studied. How he met my mom. How the divorce happened. And what he’d been up to. He learned about me. How I experienced the divorce. And what I’d been up to.
We had coffee. A few slices of his wife’s fresh spiced cake. We shared a platter of cheese. It was weird talking to my dad. Sharing a beer. Casually having a snack. Just like that. After 25 years. I had a beer with my dad. I never thought I’d experience that.
I have many questions I still want to ask. But I had to excuse myself. I had been there for 2 hours. It felt like 15 minutes, but it also could’ve been an entire day.
I’m happy I got to talk to my dad again. He was absent for a large part of my life. During my formative years, where a dad would’ve come in handy there was a void.
And I’m happy with who I am today. But driving home I had to pull over. I cried. I cursed my mom. It’s not her fault. But I wish she encouraged me to talk with my father more. I was 8. What did I know? Nothing. She had her reasons. Today she still refuses to call my father by name.
A lot can happen in 25 years. I am sure my father has changed. But I got to know him over the past few years as just a dude. An old dude. Who is my father. My dad. Do I love him? I don’t know. But he’s still my dad. And for now, for me, that’s all that matters.
Hey dad. It was awesome to finally meet you.