The Fathers in my Life

Today is Father’s Day, a day I usually don’t care for because of my own weird relationship with my father, so, today I’m going to talk about the many father figures I’ve had in my life and how they lead me to the father in my children’s lives.

My Father

Me and my father 1987-1988

My father is not an easy man to understand, some days you wonder if he even cares, I’ve spoken a bit about this in The Useless Sibling and the truth is it was so much worse, the other day someone asked me what was the best feature of my father that I looked for in a man and I just couldn’t think of one. Almost everything I thought of was something I didn’t want. I didn’t want to be treated as a mistake in my partners life and I sure as hell didn’t want him to view or children as play things for his public persona. That saying that a father is a girl’s first love? Not even close to being true for me.

Two of my most vivid memories are of my parents fighting, one where my mother was going to leave the house and had her keys in her hand and my father grabbed her arm and was pulling it like he was going to break it, I jumped on his back and started pummeling him while I yelled for my brothers, my oldest brother came with a broom stick and my father finally let go of our mother. The second incident I don’t remember as well but I remember my mother bitting into his arm and he was hitting her in the head trying to get her loose.

These were just two extremes but they fully cemented in my head that I didn’t want a relationship like this. I didn’t want a man like this, I wasn’t even sure I ever wanted to get married, all the marriages in my life save one was toxic, cheating, children on the outside, fighting, just a lot of toxicity.

Uncle Luis

Now I’ll talk about that one good marriage in my life, one of my mother’s sisters, Aunty Cathy, married my Uncle Luis, from the very first time I remember meeting him he has always been very nice to me. With my Selective Mutism I didn’t speak to him, I remember feeling very shy around him for a long time but that didn’t change how he treated me, he would talk to me, show interest in my drawings, try my failed attempts at sodas haha, he did everything my father didn’t. My uncle out of everyone in my life is who I based the ideal mate on. My aunt and uncle lived with us for a while and those were good days, I felt heard and seen, I had a good male figure in my life and he treated my aunt really well.

The day they moved out was one of the saddest in my life, it meant I would go back to being ignored or yelled at for just existing. Even though he no longer lived with us I never forgot the way my uncle treated me, I would look forward to their visits every time.

My Husband

Before I met my husband I wasn’t sure I wanted to get married or have children, I was pretty content in the fact that I would be single Aunty Lynnette, the cool and strict aunt. For whatever reasons my cousins believed I was a traveling girl? Meaning that I had many boyfriends and several sexual encounters. That couldn’t be farther from the truth, I didn’t do much as kiss a guy until my husband.

I mean sure I had lots of male friends but they were just friends, I also didn’t meet any of them in real life, my mother says I’m pretty unobservant because a lot of them were flirting with me but I never noticed it? I like my friends, they’re good men but not for me, they weren’t like my uncle none of the guys I met were like my uncle so definitely not someone I would be interested in forming a permanent bond with.

I spoke a bit on how I ended up with my husband in My Truths. Before we even had children I saw how he was with his niece and how he was with my nieces, it reminded me so much of my beloved uncle and they were both tall and wore glasses, if this wasn’t the universe talking to me I don’t know what it was.

Marvin and Chacha

One of my nieces was so taken with Marvin that she started calling him Daddy, I routinely call her his first child haha, I have to say that even though I was determined to find a man nothing like my father, Marvin and my father shared several similar tastes and qualities. I somehow found a man that was a balance between my father and my uncle.

The most notably quality between my father and Marvin? Determination. I swear I’ve never seen two people who would never give up until they have accomplished what they set out to do.

My Truths

This is going to be a heavy piece, it will involve speech about molestation, if that’s one of your triggers I’d suggest skipping this post, with that said I’m going to talk about something that I’ve talked a little about before but never in my blog. I want to change that, I want to speak my truth so others can understand certain aspects of my life and how I’ve processed it.

So, here we go…

This is a memory that is clear as day in my head even though it happened over twenty years ago.

Imagine if you will, this thin, small child, five almost six years old, quiet, she doesn’t say a thing. Expressionless the whole day. This vulnerable innocent child was me.

It was a new school, new people, new everything, I was in first grade and still mute even though they said children are only shy at first. The class was about twenty students maybe more maybe less, the size didn’t important, the children aren’t either, except for two. A boy and a girl.

I had no interactions with these two, never sat near them, never played with them, but these two affected me in a way nothing else has ever done.

It was not a normal day, we were not in class, no, we were in the school’s cafeteria. There was an event going on but I can’t remember what it was about, doesn’t matter, I was sitting at a table far away from everyone except for the boy E and the girl K. I can’t remember the names of the other students but I remember these two, I don’t know how I feel about their names, a curious thing, I don’t hate it but I won’t speak it. Ever.

I don’t know why but K decided to notice me that day, maybe it’s because we were so far apart from everyone else but she was sitting right next to me.

It’s going to get a bit graphic and I apologise but she stuck her hand under my skirt and fondled me, she pulled her hand out and said “smell yourself”. I had never had the inappropriate touch talk, no, that came later, so, as you can no don’t tell I was confused and didn’t know what to do. The boy E never touched me but he did not tell her to stop either, instead what he did was laugh and I didn’t understand that either.

I never told anyone about what happened, not my best friend, not my parents, I think I wanted to forget it ever happened. I buried it so far that I just never thought about it. That is until I was in my early 20s. I was talking to someone about rape and molestation and it was like opening a door. I remembered everything all at once.

It explained why I had an aversion to being friends with girls, why I never felt comfortable around them, why I felt different to my peers.

I talked about being The Useless Sibling but now I knew why. I up to this day have trouble accepting hugs and being touched, I still feel a little uncomfortable around women and I honestly don’t feel attraction. I honestly thought I was asexual because I’ve had people I thought were attractive I’ve never envisioned anything other than being friends, I had one or two I’ve called boyfriend but in truth it was just in name. I have never wanted to be physical with any of them.

The day I met my husband was like being awoken, it’s corny as hell but I often wondered what it would feel like just to be held. We lived in different countries then so there was no way to find out. The day he asked to visit, I swear I almost fainted, I asked my parents and they were fine. Yes, I still lived at home so when my husband came to visit he met all my family at once.

That first day was full of nerves, this guy I’d spent two years chatting to was finally here, the first time in my life I felt like a woman and I wanted to explore.

Demisexual, you don’t feel attraction until you’ve formed a deep connection, I now had an answer for my lack of interest in guys other than being friends.

On the subject of friends, although I’m still a little uncomfortable, I now have a few women I call friend.

I won’t allow a girl who was most probably being molested herself to dictate who I can and can’t be friends with.

Oh, if you’re not following the Facebook page, I had mentioned that I would do a special post for Father’s day so be on the lookout for that.

Identifying my curl patterns

Welcome back!

Today I’m going to talk about one of the most common topics of discussion in the Natural hair community, curl patterns.

To be honest I’ve never given it much thought at all because I have more than one type of pattern of you go by the chart that seems to be everywhere.

This chart right here:

According to this chart the front of my head is a mix of 3b and 3c, the middle is a mix of 3c and 4a, the very back of my head is a mix of 4a, 4b, and 4c. Like I said before I have a lot of curl patterns.

The curl patterns aren’t that important though, it’s the porosity of the hair or so I’ve been told.

My hair is low porosity and coconut oil is supposed to be really good for this type of hair but I can’t use coconut anything or my hair will become very brittle and break horrendously.

Having hair that dislikes Coconut with a passion is kind of difficult to be honest because so many hair products geared towards Afro hair has it in it. There are so many highly favored cult favorites that I just can not use.

I’ve begun to disregard all the suggestions that have been thrown my way because what works for one person’s hair doesn’t work for everyone, sometimes you just have to find what your hair loves.

My hair loves Argan, Avocado, Rice water, and Jojoba. I know this because I’ve had favorable results with them.

When I shaved my head back in 2017 I honestly didn’t know what kind of curl pattern to expect, when I was youngest my mother used the wrong products and my true pattern was hidden.

You probably can’t see it well but my hair was like a 2c and almost like a straw broom, to be honest it’s like when I flat iron my hair and take braids out.

I’m pretty sure that texture was because my mother used this grease on my hair.

My hair doesn’t do well with grease at all, it is very heavy and what that does is that it drags my curls down until all you see is limp greasy strands and washing did nothing because as soon as we were done washing my hair with shampoos and conditioners that stripped my hair she would comb it with a fine tooth comb and it was painful so painful that I’d run away and hide until my hair was pretty similar to a bird’s nest and then the real pain would come when she tried to de-tangle it while it was dry!

All my life my mother said my hair wasn’t as good as my middle sister’s because I didn’t have curls like her but when she sees my hair now she can’t believe how similar my hair actually is.

My hair is curly and coily but to maintain this it needs the proper care.

I’ve developed my own routine and I baby my hair so that I can look at it and feel a sense of pride. My hair is just as good, my hair is my crown.

The Useless Sibling

Hey guys,

Today I want to talk about something that has always bothered me.

Ever since I was very young I’ve always viewed myself as the useless sibling. I have two older sisters who were obviously intelligent, they got good grades they were Salutatorian and Valedictorian of their classes, I also have three younger brothers who are also obviously intelligent, graduating with High honors, internship, also Sal/Val of their class, and then there’s me.

Quiet, can’t speak in school, trouble with bullies, terrible grades, held back twice, nothing really special. I didn’t graduate with honors and I didn’t go to college, I am the useless child. Every parent must have a dud and I always knew it was me.

When I was younger you could go to Wendy’s for a free meal with your report card and for whatever reason my father always brought me along to see my siblings get their free meals and he would buy nothing for me. I’d sit there and watch them eat and feel out of place.

He’d also do this with toys, I got nothing while they got something new to play with. I never really blamed my siblings, I blamed myself for being too dumb to understand the work, too dumb to be able to speak.

My mother probably didn’t know about this and I know if she did she would have bought me something even if it was something small and tiny. She never let me feel useless until that one year she said to me “if you get good grades, I’ll buy you that doll you wanted”, I worked my ass off and I didn’t get that doll, sold out is what she told me.

I think that was the same year my youngest brother was born and my grandmother, my mother’s mother passed away. I remember not feeling anything really, I didn’t cry, I didn’t understand why others were crying but when I saw my mother break down I felt it, I cried because my mother was crying. I loved my grandmother and I have very fond memories of her but I just don’t feel emotions like other people.

That was also the very first year I was held back, I stopped trying, I stopped caring, my first experience with depression but nobody noticed. They said I was being difficult and willful. Nobody saw me.

I used to have a very best friend that I’d eat with hang out every chance I got and the very next year we stopped hanging out and I’d sit by myself on the stairs in front of my class room. I didn’t have any friends, I didn’t eat lunch, my thought were not the best and I didn’t know how to change them.

It’s not to say some of my classmates didn’t try, they did, they invited me to sit with them under a mango tree, they’d share a little of their lunches with me and talk around me. Never to me because everyone knew I didn’t talk. I barely even smiled or showed any emotions.

For my entire young life I felt out of place like I couldn’t understand my peers, they were all speaking a language I just didn’t know. I tried to emulate them, I tried to have crushes like the other girls and copy their mannerisms and what I thought their thought patterns might be but it was like playing a part I had no business trying out for.

In Jr. High my second year of 7th grade after being held back yet again I encountered a teacher that challenged me. According to one of my older sisters she was in the woman’s class all of one day but this woman would constantly call me by my sister’s name and it chafed because I had my own name. This woman would also make fun of students who did poorly and I was not going to let her make fun of me, she was going to know my name. Mine, not my sister’s but mine.

I got into honors that year, I spoke for the first time that year, my grandfather, my father’s father passed away that year. My mother was pregnant with my baby sister that year, 9/11 happened that year and my mother lost my baby sister that year.

It was a catalyst for me and I let everything push me into doing everything I could to get out of school.

It didn’t matter. My father still didn’t acknowledge what I had accomplished, I was still the child that couldn’t speak and couldn’t make it in the real world because I was filled with so much anxiety I couldn’t do half the things my siblings could.

It’s amazing how much your parents can hurt you without knowing they did or maybe he knew exactly where to inflict the worst pain.

He’s such a confusing person, he says these cruel things but then he took me out for my birthday just me and him and he bought me a birthday gift that I never thought he would. We’d go out to the movies together and we argued yes but it seemed like only the two of us did these things. My father was like me.

He was filled with anxiety and he didn’t know how to express his emotions.

As I got older I learned more about him just by observing him and I am so much like him not just in looks but in temperament.

All those times when he’d sit by himself away from others, I understand it now, he looked so cut off from us because he didn’t know how to interact with us.

When he’d want to leave or not go to a social function, I fully understand it. I hate social functions and how it drains me.

His special hobbies, his desire for a schedule, I do all of this as well.

I felt like I was looking for his approval and never got it but I was the only one he’d call to help him, the only one he showed a little attention in, I think my father understood me just a little better than I understood myself back then.

That saying he kept saying to me? That I’d never go anywhere and be able to survive in the real world?

I took it to heart and pushed myself, I left home and traveled internationally, I got married and I might still struggle socially but I function on my own level.

I might not be as academically fortunate as my siblings but I am not the useless sibling, I made my success in personal battles and I accomplished my own great things.

Thanks for reading a tiny bit of my story.