For me, it spells nostalgia. For millions of others, it spells a "cheer" heard by a whole generation. I recently found a photograph of when I was very young. It's the only one I've ever seen of myself that I actually looked happy. I even double checked with my mother that the smiling girl was me and not a body double or an alien parading around pretending to be me. She assured me that the happy young lass on the right hand side of the photo wearing the dress is me.

Here I sit trying to remember the "happy" times of my childhood. One thing for sure is that my father was not part of my happy memories. You know, it's such a shame he merely was the adult male who lived under the same roof as me. He truly epitomized what a non-participating parent is. I started thinking about what living with someone like that does to the whole family dynamics and how over time being "invisible" to someone who should love you and protect you makes being happy a difficult thing to achieve.

It wasn't until a few years ago that I realized my father never attended any of my three brothers' sporting events. What father wouldn't be proud to have jocks for sons and especially jocks who excelled at any sport they participated in? Who wouldn't be proud to have a son who was captain of the football team or a son who boxed in the Navy and was the Golden Gloves heavyweight champ of the state of Maine? Who wouldn't be proud to see their sons play college football or basketball? My father never attended any event and now I wonder how that effected my brothers... What kind of message did that send to them?

Gratitude statement: Although some things are very painful to remember, without the pain and suffering in silence I wouldn't be who I am today.

All gibberish within ©2004-2010 Mildred Ratched Memoirs.


  1. I had the same problem with my father (I say
    'father' because I never considered him a 'dad'). As a result I never really knew him, and wasn't devastated when he died. But I've often wondered why it was he couldn't take the time to be a part of my childhood. Working too hard just doesn't cut it for me.

    I assumed there was something wrong with me: I was a disappointment. Maybe he only liked girls.

    I took me years before I realized I wasn't the problem. Still...it was a loss. Mostly, his.

    As you, I have spent an entire lifetime saying that it made me who I am. But, really, would I be a different and better person if he had shown me love...or interest, for that matter?

  2. Thank you both for providing me with enough thoughts for another post.