by Lynne Carrol
I never got the pleasure of meeting my grandfather, but I heard a lot about him and through stories. Once characteristic that was starkly vivid was that he was a family man who loved his all his children. Even though his children were from several unions, he made sure that they knew each other. He passed away a year before I was born. I wish I had been afforded a chance to meet him or even just shake his hand.
My Father has been absent all my life. He will call me maybe once or twice a year if I’m lucky. I still find I love the man regardless. But as much as I love him, I do not aspire to be anything like him. My sentiments come from the fact that he has never deemed it necessary to take any responsibility for anything in his life, especially when it comes to being a father to me.
My late uncle, Nicholas Carrol (may his soul rest in peace), although flawed, was the closest thing to a father within my bloodline. He was younger than my father and he used to baby sit me while my mother worked. I closely tagged along him so much that when I started grade 1 I listed him as my father when we were doing family tree activities. I did so again in Grade 2 but my mom explained to me that it was not so. My other uncles, Trevor and Tylor loved and respected my mom. That on its own makes me have immense respect for them, even though I do not see them often. They also taught me that it was ok to be in touch with my feelings.
Now let me tell you about the man I call DAD.
His name is Vile (pron VHI-LAY). He is not my biological father, did not formally adopt me nor even my mother’s partner. But he has been more of a dad to me than my real father. He is the one who has remembered my birthdays, gave me random phone calls and sent me frequent text messages, just to check in on me. Those gestures are priceless and mean so much to me. I have known him since I was 2 years old and even though we have moved on to different parts of the world he manages to always keep in contact. I wonder if my father knows my birthday.
Now I am who I am today because of all these men in my life somehow I feel I have a piece of them in me. A man does not have to have a “penis” to be a good father/role model.
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