Life is different for every one. Although we may not all have been raised by two parents we all have a biological mother and father. I do not know who can benefit from this specific blog. If there is even one person or family, this can help to encourage positive change or forgiveness. I am happy to share it with the world. Are you that daughter or son who is on the fence about looking for an absent parent? possibly forgiving an abusive or absent parent? Are you the parent who isn’t sure if it matters at this point to be apart of your children’s life or is it too late? As for me, I say it matters and it’s not too late. Do it. Ask the question. Say it.
Truth be known that I love the man who was my father. Danny was not a part of my life as some fathers are for their children. This I carried with me most of my 43 years, I was aware of who my father was and at times I knew where he lived. I even attended one of his weddings. Our relationship was pretty non existent for the most part. I was not encouraged to have hate or to disrespect my father. I did that on my own as a teenager into my adult life.
Danny was human and was affected by the world as we all are. As we are all programed by our lives as we know them, as we were taught. How can we know what we are not shown? Even if we feel it in our souls we are not aware at times why we feel the need to question our upbringing or the beliefs of our ancestors and loved ones. some of us do speak up when we are old enough to finally voice our thoughts and ask the questions we feel. We all have choices and free will. Regardless of what my father chose to do or not to do in his life. I have the same free will and my own beliefs that I am entitled to and practice.
If, I was ever encouraged to feel ashamed to say I love the man who is my father because it wasn’t returned or automatically shown, well, I should have been ashamed of myself. For many years I did feel embarrassed and sad that I was wanting to be in the life of my father and him in mine, but he didn’t show the same interest for me. It was difficult to accept, to not be hurt or angry. Not knowing who this man was other than what I heard and few memories of him and I.
One of my first memories.
At the age of 3 years old, Being told by my mother that she had a surprise for me as we walked through my childhood home to the kitchen. My surprise? My surprise was my father. As I recognized the man turning towards me and him smiling, I ran to him. As he lifted me up, I threw my arms around his neck.
Just knowing that he was around I knew that there was always a possibility I would see him somewhere. Especially if I was around my siblings or at my Aunt Delia’s who is his sister. My Aunt Delia did not accept that I would refer to him as Danny not Dad. I am glad that she was firm in her way of making sure that it was known. Be that as it may, I was Danny’s daughter. He was my Father. Although, I do not know as much about my father as my older siblings, I can see how much we are the same not just in features but in personality. It is what it is. We are who we are, and I openly say I am Danny’s daughter and am proud of it. I am a strong woman because of my life experiences. Good and bad they are my experiences. All that I have struggled with in life and all I have been blessed with is what has helped my true self awaken into my purpose. I am no better than the next nor am I not enough.
Closure with my father in his final days was exactly what should have been. All the years of praying to be close with him and to talk with him had already been the plan.
Last conversation with and memory of my father
“I love him and always loved him. How I wish I could have had more time with him.” (as my father put his head back & closed his eyes)
I told him how I was upset and hurt when I was younger. And blamed him for bad things that happened in my life and to me. That I never knew if he even loved me.
(He looked at me like he did not know or was surprised at what I said) I told him it was ok I understand now. I apologized and asked him to forgive me. And I forgave him. I know he had probably gone through bad times himself. None of it was his fault and that I believe he is a good man. We are not perfect and do things that we are not proud of. But I wanted him to know that no matter what, nothing changed that I loved him and thanked him for being my father. He was holding my hand and smiled so big his eyes filled with tears nodding in agreement, placing his other hand on top of both mine and squeezed them. Without turning away he looked straight in my eyes we stayed that way for a few seconds. I thank God for those moments of peace and love between my father and I. That night I chose to believe though dad didn’t say it. His look and the way he held my hands told me that my father did love me.
The night before my father passed my brothers all visited him. Even though our oldest brother Daniel was in Georgia, we had him on a video call. I chose to with him that night. Daniel Torres passed peacefully in his sleep that following morning. My faith in God and in my angels gives me the comfort to know that my father and I are still getting to know each other that he is guiding not just myself, but all his children.
I would like to be the voice for all of us who can’t but want to speak up and ask the questions. To scream the words. To tell that young girl and young boy that they are loved and are so special. Free yourself from the emotional pain forgive and love. Be the voice for others that you feel you needed. It’s not too late and it still matters.
Karen E. Martinez