A New Hope (well, chapter anyway)


…Star Wars nerds will get that. The rest of you? Sorry, you’re not the target audience.

The sound of my children’s laughter is the best sound in the world. There’s not been enough of it for the last 6 and 3 years, respectively. Lately tho, that’s been changing.

Play Therapy

So my daughter is having some separation anxiety issues. All of a sudden she’ll come up to mommy and say “I don’t want you to die!” completely out of the blue. Bizarre. Also, she’ll be fine all day then at night going to bed she’ll all of a sudden get a belly ache and physically make herself sick. So we get ahold of a lady at church we know that is a therapist (the rapist, get it? GET IT?) and we start sending our daughter to talk to her. She uses Play Therapy. To tell the truth, I really don’t know that much about it, but one of the things the therapist has had my daughter do is a drawing of daddy’s moods.

So my daughter draws a black page with one little spec of red in it. The therapist asks her: well what is what here? To which my daughter replies, the black is when daddy is angry, and the red is when he’s happy. <piano drops on head>

This is like my wake up call to how my moods and drinking have and are affecting my daughter. God bless her, poor thing, to have me as a daddy, I hope I don’t fuck her up. So the therapist pulls my wife aside the other day to talk to her after my daughter draws the moods pic, and says “how is everything at home? You know you can say ANYTHING here and it’s confidential”…implying of course, Does he hit you. Why is it that’s the first thing that ever gets asked? FOR THE RECORD THE ANSWER IS NO. But the thing is, I don’t have to hit. Not that I do, but I’m pretty good with how my words cut. Always have been. So of course my wife explains to this lady who we go to church with and is therapisting our daughter that I’m an alcoholic and yes it’s been hard, etc, etc…We’ve fought a lot and we’re getting better, my wife was going to leave me back in June, etc, etc….I personally can’t wait for our sit down with her so she can look down her nose at me and berate me for being a horrible person, man, husband, father. That’s what I’m looking forward to. Did the sarcasm come out enough there? Just making sure you caught it.

But this isn’t about me. This is about how in just the first 6 years of my daughter’s life I’ve fucked her up so badly already just with the fights my wife and I have had, or the behavior I’ve exhibited. Makes me feel like shit, but it’s my own fault.

I’ve had a couple beers here or there in the last two months, but I haven’t been drunk, so that’s a positive trend. My wife and I are also doing better and that’s great. I also had one of the best weekends I can remember this past with my kids. My wife was really busy all weekend so it left me to be Mr Mom with the kids. Friday night the whole fam went to the pool, Saturday we went to the beach and the playground and had a blast, then Sunday had a good day too, but the capping moment was this:

Backlog first: to alleviate my daughter’s anxiety at night I’ve started trying to get her mind off of being sick by trying to help her concentrate on happy thoughts, instead of being sick. So each night I’ll ask her what her happy thought is and she’ll come up with something like the time we went to Disney, or playing with our Dog, or doing something as a family etc….

So last night we end up playing a card game, just me and the kids. We’re playing and having a good time and at some point I begin seeing if I can remember how to build a house of cards. So I get my ground floor built, then the ceiling, then start on the 2nd floor and of course I manage to knock it all down. Then next time my daughter wants to help so we start building it together and then eventually we knock it down, then she wants to do it by herself, so I show her how to start and keep building. It takes a few times but eventually she gets the hang of it and she does it all by herself. So we’re going along and then out of the blue she says to me “Daddy, I’m going to use this as my happy thought tonight”.

<sniff> Sorry, got something in my eye there.

Here’s hoping the next time my daughter draws a mood picture of daddy, I’ve earned a lot less mad, and a lot more happy.

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~ by sobriety6923 on August 2, 2010.

One Response to “A New Hope (well, chapter anyway)”

  1. You don’t want to hear this, I’m so glad there is a therapist involved for your whole family’s sake! It doesn’t mean you have screwed up your daughter, just means that she is so perceptive of what is going on around her! The therapist shouldn’t look down her nose at you but will hopefully be a support system for you. Yes, your words can cut and cut hard–I speak from experince! As you have seen, things are improving in your life and within your person without the alcohol–keep it up!

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