Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Dear Dad....

In my purgatory days, staying in the San Gabriel Valley, I had an idea.  And that idea turned into a self-discussion.  And that self-discussion turned into self-reflection.  And that self-reflection turned into more reflection, which converged into a decision.

The idea came to me, when I just thought about who I was.  Actually, it happened because we had plumbing problems at our house.  Me mother and I went through 10 plumbers, until the leak was actually fixed.  I would have said five were just crooks.  Two misdiagnosed the problem, which led to them not having a job.  Two had personality issues with my moms.  And the last one fixed it.  In that ordeal, I witnessed plumbing contractors take advantage of what they thought was naive little old lady.  Little did they know, she had me for a son.  And little did they like, when I stepped in.  All in all, I was able to get a refund back from one of the plumbers and help make sure poor old Ma wasn't taken advantage of.  

I did look at her at one point and said, "You know, you wouldn't be in this mess if you just listened to what I told you to do in the first place.  Why didn't you just listen?"

And she laughed and said, " 'Cos I'm your mom."

I replied, "But - look at the mess you've gotten yourself into, now.  You can't just keep getting into them."

She said, "Yes, I can.  'Cos you're my son.  You get me out of them."

I sighed.  Thought about how I ended up in this codependent relationship, not by choice but by birth.  I rolled my eyes and said, "I suppose."

And it occurred to me, then, hey the relationship you had with your mother has come a long, long way from the constant wars in the house.  A long way.  And, if you're honest with yourself, she hasn't changed.  You've changed.  But as a result, she's changed in how she responds to you.  

That got me thinking.  You have a mission.  You need to win over Dad.  But how?  I have such a strained and cold relationship with him.  I thought and thought.

In the end, what grieves me the most is that my dad doesn't know I can write or what's happening in my life.  My mom doesn't know I can write, but she at least knows what's going on in my life.  She can tell you my favorite foods - has to be crab broth with rice cakes.  MMM...  She call tell you I love my mustang and bmw.  I guess Dad knows that too because everyone knows that.  But she also knows I was becoming a better boxer, against her wishes, and all the friends that come and visit.  My dad couldn't tell you or me or anyone any of this.

I wrote my father a letter once.  I did.  I swear it.  I was living in Seoul, the Republic of Korea at the time.  I wrote the whole letter by hand in Korean.  Nothing too sophisticated as my Korean isn't great, but I guess it blew the whole family out of the water that they could see I actually knew how to write Korean.  It also tells you how little they knew about my life at that time of it.  My father said he almost started to cry when he read it.

So, I got to thinking, I should write letters to my dad.  I have a Korean friend I made in New Zealand.  He said he'd help me translate them in Korean.  I'm going to give him one a week and let him know he doesn't have to even write back as my Korean isn't probably good enough for me to understand.  I just want him to know what's going on.  If he's comfortable with my friends reading the letter, I'll post them on here.

So - that's my new project.

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