WHAT WOULD IT BE LIKE TO HAVE A DAD that could be proud of me?
What would it be like to have a dad that saw me as an equal/potential equal, and was okay with or even eager for that?
What would it be like to have a dad who was proud of me? Or could be?
What would it be like to have a dad who wanted to be teammates?
I woke up from a dream with my dad again, and my first thought was why am I so weak? Why does he keep entering my dreams, however infrequently? Why do I keep going back to a scenario where I am a child again?
But then I thought about what happened in the dream and how it felt. We were a team. I was doing what I was good at and he was doing what he was good at. He wasn’t trying to show me how stupid and useless I was to make himself feel better.
What would it be like to trust another human to have my back?
What would it be like to have a close relationship where I wasn’t being set up for failure?
What would it be like to have a dad who wasn’t scared of my succeeding, unless he could wrangle some glory from it?
What would it be like to have a dad who was okay with me being as brilliant and as successful as possible?
I have known since I was a child that I never had a dad. I had a bully, motivated by insecurity. I don’t blame him. He had his own wounds and demons. But it doesn’t change the fact that it would have been far healthier for me to have grown up without a male figure at all. I think things are different for my youngest brother now, and I am glad for that.
Despite the health issues, the hyper vigilance, and deep mistrust of close relationships, I know some good things came of it. I am highly empathic and emotionally intelligent. I became passionate about gender equality. I am in tune with what it means to be a loving person and let that guide me through life.
But now I am grateful for that dream, because before today I didn’t even know what a positive dad relationship could feel like. That it would be okay to let someone play that role. That someone could trust me as an equal. That someone could be proud of me and it wouldn’t make me weak to allow it. That someone could be excited for my success. That’s pretty cool, and I am grateful for every person who grew up experiencing something like that. It makes this world a better place.
Now that I know these kinds of relationships are possible, I am more likely to encounter such a one personally. It’s a little scary to think about, but pretty exciting also.
To knew and better experiences! 🍻