This week’s Photo Friday challenge was “Dad,” obviously  in honor of Father’s Day.   I debated about whether to do this one because of the pain I feel when I think of how my father abandoned me, but in the end decided to participate because I do have a lot of happy memories involving him.  After he moved out the first time (there would be numerous comings and goings until the actual divorce), sometimes he would come get me on Saturdays (if he didn’t have a shooting match), and we usually went to Griggs Dam.  We would go exploring, looking for arrowheads at the quarry and all through the wooded areas.  He would tell me stories, and I would listen raptly;  I was just so happy to be with him.  I cried most nights because I missed him; keep in mind, I was only six years old.

Last fall, I finally went back there to see if I could handle it.  It was painful, but I took some photos and tried to remind myself of his own damaged childhood, and tell myself he tried his best.  Maybe one of these days that will work.

Anyway, here are a few photos in tribute to “Dad” . . .

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This is a stone “castle/fort” along the edge of the road winding through Griggs Dam.  We used to play hide and seek there, and sometimes I would pretend I was a princess and Dad would pretend to be a dragon.  We also would have lunch in the center of the fort.  (Which was usually McDonalds, and Dad would order his sandwich without some item on it so they would have to make it special for him instead of getting a pre-made Quarter Pounder.  He was like that.)


This is the view from across the river of one of our favorite places to go.  I loved those trees and to me the branches looked like the snakes on Medusa’s head.  And I felt protected amongst the dense trees.


As the sun set, Dad would take me home, and I was so sad I could barely contain it.  I didn’t want the day to end, because I always had this fear I wouldn’t see him again.  Unfortunately, that fear was realized.  But despite all of that, I still love him, and deep in my heart hold a little girl notion that someday we’ll have a relationship again.


5 thoughts on “Dad

  1. What a fantastic place. How special that he gave you such great memories of a beautiful despite what he was going through, which was undoubtedly painful. I don’t know your dad, but now that I have my own kids I can’t help but relate a little to other parents. Maybe he took you there because the place where he was living/staying was not a great place, and he wanted the best possible place for you. Maybe he felt you deserved better than what he could give you. I try to be the best mom I can be for my kids every day. My mom died when I was four, and I know any day could be the last I have with them. Sometimes I feel like what I have to give them is not enough. I’m on empty. But I keep trying every day. I’m sure he would be with you if he could. It’s so sad when our parents aren’t there for us. How clever of you to cherish the things you did have with him. I remember my mom like a goddess. At 4, my mom was larger than life, steady, constant, warm and unbelievably strong. Like the sun, the stars and the oceans all flowed through her veins and gave me life. That’s how I will always remember her. And that’s precious to me.


    1. Lauren

      I’m lucky that I had my mom, because she’s stuck by me through everything, and despite how he hurt her (he cheated on her), she tries to be kind when it comes to him and I. And I’m not always able to look past the devastation he caused me, because sometimes I feel he should have known how damaging his own behavior was to me and he just didn’t care. He was so angry with my mom about the divorce that he took it out on me a lot. But there were good times, and while most of the time I survive by purposely not thinking of him, today I can’t help myself. I *do* still love him, and always will, and I’ll just try to hold on to the good things when I’m able to see past it all. =) On a brighter note, your kids are so, so lucky to have you! I admire the fact you keep going, keep trying, and that you don’t let go. That is an amazing and beautiful quality!

      thank you so much for your comment, and the comfort you provided. I appreciate it more than you know!!!


      1. I didn’t start to be truly forgiving toward my dad and stepmom until I had kids of my own, and I could see that despite my best intentions, I was still making mistakes. I finally accepted that we all make mistakes. We are all doing our best, even if our best is sometimes not great. Our parents disappoint sometimes, and sometimes we disappoint ourselves. And that’s okay. Because failing is what makes us most human. You are a brave and loving person. I’m glad you had someone terrific to hold onto. Warmly, Brenda


  2. Lauren

    You’re so right about mistakes — there are things that *I* would do differently where my Dad (and for that matter, my Mom as well) is concerned. Hurtful things I said and such. But I’ll keep trying as a daughter, and you keep trying as a mom, and we’ll just do the best we can. And I think in most instances, that’s good enough. =) I appreciate your support and insight, and I’m grateful to you for both!! thank you so much, Brenda!! *hugs*


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