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October 25, 2022

Dear Dad from my 7 year old self.

Dear Dad

At 7 years old I look up to you. I see a hero. I see a man that can do anything and I dream of being like that and a human of awesomeness like you.  I want to make you proud however I can’t figure out how.
I am afraid to feel this life. I am afraid to trust my emotions. I am afraid to lean into life because I see you always running, chasing and doing but never stopping.
I think I find it hard because I cannot feel you centered in this world. I feel you are still trying to find you and you have forgotten you are not within your doings and accomplishments.  You are already worthy just being you and your enoughness and love is within.
I see a man ticking boxes, trying to live his dreams, saving the planet but forgetting the people right in front of him.  We his family who are begging for his time not on his schedule but on our schedule too when we need you.
I’m scared because I want to feel like we have a family unit. We look like one but it is segmented and only on your terms because you cannot feel or see your love and in turn cannot feel ours and how proud we are of you and that you do not need to do anything but be you. I can see you cannot see us yearning for your time because you are unable to feel through the pain of being different in this world and needing to be understood. We want to understand you and be there for you but we cannot because you won’t let us in and push us away with your busyness and your schedule that only fits us in at certain times.
What does play look like I wonder?  Mum sometimes plays with us but she is so tired and needs your support but you are not there. The whole world sees your awesomeness. You are celebrated in awards for your landcare and coastcare magic and everyone talks so highly about you but you can’t feel it or see it. You keep chasing something and leaving us behind.
I will do everything I can to make you feel loved, not alone and worthy, because you are my hero like my brother. I wouldn’t change you. I just want more time with you and mum to feel supported and less stress and my brother and I to sit with you laugh and play.
However I feel confused as I am losing myself trying to make you proud in the process.  I am also feeling like I am misunderstood like you and can’t feel love because I can’t find my worthiness as I do not have a role model to show me this or that stops to just love me as I am here and now, without having to chase a destination.
I feel not smart enough because I do not have your maths or science brain. I am a feeler and this doesn’t do well in school because no test can show that nor can you feel it.
I feel emotions are limiting and weak, but when I feel them they make me feel alive.
I feel being a woman is shameful because we are too emotive and I am scared as that is all I can be. And I do not know if a man or woman will love me if the love I seek from you cannot be felt and found, because I cannot connect with you because you cannot connect with you.
I feel like my only saviour is movement like you, as this is the only time I do not think or feel disconnected or alone.  My thoughts stop and my breath finally starts. However, I am exhausted from always doing it and not being able to sit still.
I am scared of food because every piece of food has meaning and it isn’t connected to sitting as a family, it is only connected to health, good or bad.  I thought food was meant to bring people together but it tends to make us all sit in silence at our dinner table.
I am scared I wont find love like I dream of because I see you and mum love each other but are always on a different page and beat from each other, never coming together. It worries me, is this the only love I will ever know? I want a love different from this and I am scared that maybe I will never know it. Maybe I’ll only know this love, the love that is not present, stressed, different timing, no safe place to be yourself kind of love. So how can I believe in the love I dream about if I’ve never known it? Maybe it is just a fairy tale?
I know I have a wonderful family and parents.  I know on the outside looking in it is sound and we are loved in the best way our family can love but these things weigh heavy on me and are making me confused and lost in this world at such a young age.  I know you’re doing your best and I just wish I could take away your pain so we could talk and really meet each other.  I know it would help me to feel not so alone and lost as I grow up.
I know I will do my best to grow and heal just like you are doing, however I just wish I knew how life looked connected and nourished with humans, not like you are always alone, chasing, fighting to find your worth, be something and not being in the moment.
I wish you only happiness and wish I knew how to show you it and give it to you filled with love and enoughness. But my heart hurts because watching you I can see you dont have it yet and therefore I and you cannot really be present with each other how I crave. It scares me. Is this what adulthood is, will I end up this way too or is there peace, love and stillness in my future?
Love TnT
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