Sunday, June 17, 2012
Father's day is an odd day for me. On the one hand, celebrating my fatherhood, spending the day with my family is awesome.
On the other hand, I've sorta had three fathers. The one I thought was my father and whose last name I was given. The one who was my biological father, who I never knew. And my step father, who I'd rather I never knew.
James David Brown was the man who I thought was my father for most of my life. My son's middle name is James as well. My mom told me that he died a few months before I was born. I'd always imagined that maybe he was still alive somewhere and just waiting to come and find me. Then, when I was 40, I was doing genealogical research and found out that Jim Brown died a year and a half before I was born.
Joseph Mario Ciminissi was a man I found out about 3 years ago. Turns out he was my biological father. Not only that, he lived in Anaheim, 40 miles from me and was alive until 1995. My mom eventually told me that he didn't want me. In short, he lived a drive away most of my life, but never wanted to meet me and I never knew about him until it was too late.
William Lopez was my step father. He kept two families for a while, then chose my mother after about 5 years. Even then, he'd often go stay with his other family. He was physically abusive, until my mom stood up to him when I was about 10, and then he was just mentally abusive. I moved away from home when I was 16, largely to get away from him. He died a few years later.
So, my experience with my own fathers was less than stellar.
But, I also had another father.
I've written about this before, but even before I knew Him as my father, He was with me during my darkest days. When I'd walk home, alone, in the rain, He was there. When I spent my afternoons at home, before my mom or step-father came home at 6, he was with me. When I was 17, and living alone, with my family having recently, moved to Kentucky, I was horribly depressed, and He saved my life. When I was 18, He brought my Robin into my life, and saved me again. When my son was born, He was the example I used to become what I think is a good father.
It wasn't the man I thought was my father. It wasn't the man who WAS my father, but who didn't want me and I didn't know. It wasn't my step father, who was an amazing example of what NOT to do.
It was none of those men who were my father.
It was God who was my father in all of those times I needed Him..
It's clear to me that I wouldn't be here today if it weren't for Him, stepping in to keep me alive.
So, thank you, father. Thank you for being the best example possible. I only hope that I'm living up to your standards, but I know in my heart that you will always love me. Even when I make mistakes. Even when I'm not the best child you could have.