Theun, when I paused to consider that my father may still be hurting, it brought tears to my eyes. When my girlfriend returned home from work she also fired into me with a few more truths regarding my arrogance and self-centeredness, so I cried some more. I have never cried before in front of my girlfriend in all my time with her. The next day I did some more crying with her.
A part of me didn't want to send the request when I wrote it and I sat on it for a week before sending it because I felt I already knew the answer. I interpreted this though as me simply doing my doing and delaying in taking any action, so I sent it. When I did send it, a part of me wanted to retract it. That very night I had a vivid dream where I killed my sister and buried her in the back garden of my father's house. In my dream I found a cassette player and hit the rewind button in the desperate hope that I could somehow rewind time and the mayhem I had caused, but I couldn't. When I woke up I felt sick because of the sheer intensity of the dream. I am not now trying to pretend that I didn't write it or that it wasn't an accurate portrayal of what was going on for me at the time, because it was very much so.
Over the weekend I made contact with my family and I have arranged some time in the near future to meet my father in person. I am going to try my hardest to listen to what he has to say without letting my arrogance get in the way because I do give a fuck for him. I always have. The day my mother died we were all devastated but I distinctly remember telling myself that everything was going to be OK now that she was no longer in pain. But that didn't happen because for years afterwards I would see the pain in my father's eyes and I too would feel his pain so very much so. I would often wake up to my father crying himself to sleep and then I would cry too and wish for nothing more than for his pain to go. I realise now that I once did have a very close connection with him and I am now beginning to question whether the actual death of my mother, as hard as it was, is the real issue at hand here.
Until the last weekend I had never opened up about my past before with my girlfriend and I had never really been bothered to listen to her story either â€“ her father died when she was a child. Last weekend we made a start on this and have agreed to continue with what we have started.
You maybe completely right about my father being a deeply sensitive man and I am now very keen to find out and see what happens from here. Despite feeling very exposed and vulnerable, a part of me feels quite optimistic about learning further with what I have found and truly grateful for the honest guidance that I have recently received.
If my guidance has been of service to you, my friend, then I am happy for you.
I hope that you do not THINK that your father is ONLY hurting because of your mother's death. As I said to you, in my experience of people that fly off the deep end at the drop of a hat, it is mostly, not always, but mostly, due to an unresolved hurt that runs very deeply - a hurt they have lived with for most of their lives. But what do most people do when such a person explodes? Invariably they become all "hurt," self-righteous and feel ever so hard-done-by. But they will seldom, if ever, pause to consider that maybe they are dealing with a wounded animal that is snarling and snapping because it is trying not to give in to the pain that is always so acute, and so easily triggered by almost anything that reminds it of what caused it. Because people around them always REACT in this way, the person concerned has learned through bitter experience to withdraw and to keep quiet, not making his problems other people's problems.
Such people, my friend, there are plenty of in the world. I suspect your father may be one of them. So next time he flies off the handle, instead of reacting, try to RESPOND to him with love and warmth. Try to make him understand that it is okay; that you are there for him. Try to get him to share, but if he does not want to, or cannot bring himself to do so, then just BE with him. You don't have to talk. Just BE with him. :) In time he will learn to trust you enough to open up, but when he does, expect an avalanche of suppressed emotions to come out. But do not try to reason with him, for this will only make him close up again. Just listen, and if need be, encourage him to keep sharing until he has emptied himself. Then try giving him the love he has not known for many years now, perhaps has never known other than from your mother.
We all want love, my friend, but until we learn the warrior's way, we only want to give love on our terms! To learn to love unconditionally is something only a warrior can do. Only once you are complete within yourself, and have become your own best friend, do you stop demanding and seeking love from others. Only then can you stand free from expectations and demands, and love the world around you unconditionally, in other words, loving it WITHOUT expecting anything in return. The warrior loves the world NOT because it is such a great thing to do, LOL, but simply because it has become for him a way of life, a way that is as natural as it is to breathe. You breathe that you may live. The warrior too breathes that he may live, but this for the warrior is no longer enough. The warrior not only needs to breathe and to eat and to drink water, but he also needs to love, for without that love life loses its meaning and becomes a duty to be fulfilled. A warrior is utterly impeccable in his EVERY duty, but not because impeccability is going to make him a powerful warrior. No. The warrior is already a warrior, and therefore it is not more power he is seeking, for power is already at his command. The warrior is utterly impeccable in his EVERY duty because of his great love for the path on which he walks. He and his path have become ONE.
With warm regards,