To move forward with a father that never was.

As much as I can, I try to live out of the grace that has been given to me. It is within my natural disposition to lean towards what is loving and kind and proceed in life, not out of fear, but caution and wisdom. Living out of fear or anxiety cripples the freedom and life we have been given, and that presents a tremendous disservice to who we are as people and to our souls. 

I am not afraid. And when I am, I take notice and determine why. I don't allow these things to dictate my decisions at all.

Furthermore, I have the benefit of being a stable minded, grounded, joy filled woman. I know what anchors me. I know why. I may not always feel joyful, but the point is, joy is not contingent on situation. It just is. It abides regardless of the storm. It abides because it is not based on mood or circumstance, but on the very center of who we are as people. I have joy in the darkest of moments and in the lightest. I have grace against adversity and in prosperity. And I have these things because I have my God. One day I might write more on happiness versus joy, because there is a distinct and important difference between the two in which we live our lives. To pursue happiness is circumstantial. Joy withstands. 

Currently in my life, I am struggling with how to proceed with this relationship I am in with my biological father. I operate out of grace and caution. I operate out of what is healthy and right, while placing boundaries. As of now, that means space. It means that under no circumstance do I want him to know anything personal about my life besides very basic information, such as line of work. I want to be kept abreast of important things, but that's it. 

I am not held back by the past. I am not responding out of the memories of my childhood which set the stage for his absence in my life. I am sure the absence was God given. I am sure that it was good. But the question that I face now, is how to I respond to this now, going forward? 

I can forgive, and I often do forgive. But what disturbs and perturbs me now, is his lack of acknowledgement. How do I choose to know a man now who was a terrible abuser of my past and who does not even acknowledge his own actions? I may never get a real apology. But that is something I cannot reconcile. 

He is an elderly man who is lonely. He calls me sweetheart with regularity on the few calls we have, and offers to paint my picture. He asks me to hug him at the hospital and asks if he can kiss my cheek. He cannot understand why I say no and would not want him to touch me. He doesn't understand that it's because those are the same hands which violated me. Those are the hands which have caused severe and frequent bruising on the body of my younger self. As I have said, these are not things that haunt. They happened, and they just were. But the fact is, they did happen. I cannot be in relationship with a man who was a perpetrator of my past. Not when he doesn't acknowledge it. Not when he doesn't offer any sort of apology. I can be present for important stuff, but that's it.

I don't have a need for him in my life. I don't have a need for reconciliation of any kind. I am fine, and actually, I am really good. But this situation is a struggle. And as of now, I must maintain my stance of healthy distance, whatever that may be. I am weary of insuring that I am operating out of positive, healthy bounds only. People can be so reactive, and I try not to make reactionary choices, because those choices are often not measured in prudence or wisdom. Don't get me wrong, I can definitely be a reactionary person. But I do make efforts in this regard and in this way. 

My hope that I extend grace and wisdom. I surely try. But it has to be healthy and it has to be right. Even with this, room most be allowed for God. I must be open and willing for his work. As of now, I can't help but be troubled by this whole thing. I guess that is the nature of complicated, strained, abuse ridden relationships bound by blood alone.