My father and I have an interesting relationship, to say the least.
It’s been twenty two years of ups and more downs, a relationship plagued with guilt and pity and fear and anger.
Of course, neither of us intend to do the other any real harm, but the physical and emotional reactions that I have to that man are hard to calm. It’s curious, really, and it’s something that’s taken me forever to even be able to manage. I’m still not there yet.
I get anxious, physically unable to sit still, mentally unnerved, and outwardly curt. These reactions happen within seconds of any comment that my brain fields as an attack. Usually, I am able to curtail these changes by removing myself from the situation. Sometimes, however, that is impossible and deep breathing has never been one of my specialties, leading to the outbursts and the blowups that seem to mark our interactions.
While I was camping, Dad thought it would be nice to take my computer into the Apple store to see what might be done about the screen issue. (I had cracked the screen, of course, and had it quoted to see what it would cost to fix, and the quote was over $800…since the computer was still usable and fine, I decided not to even bother, especially since 800 is more than I could ever get together at this point in my life.) They agreed to fix it. For free.
Grateful, yes, but upset also.
Again, the invasion of privacy issue began to irk me, and it stayed with me even after the tears had dried. Although he had the best of intentions, I was and still am upset by the fact that he removed my computer without asking. I’ve nearly had enough of people touching my computers while I’m out of town; the things that could go wrong seem to multiply and are the stuff of nightmares.
Of course, there was a blowup.
The first came after I returned; it was soft, perhaps a category two hurricane. Nothing came of it, but words were exchanged as I attempted to voice my concerns.
Upon the computer’s completion, we made plans to go and get it. I’ve left out a crucial part of the story: illegal software. I had some of it on my computer, and had I known that it was going to be taken in to be serviced, I would have removed it. This would save me from having to suffer through a potentially embarrassing lecture. (I’m quite sensitive to criticism, it’s not something that serves me well and it’s something I’m hoping to do better with in the future.) Either way, I was apprehensive to retrieve the computer from the evil Apple employees bent on destroying their customers. (well…)
We attempted to leave in one car. I refused. Sometimes, you don’t exactly return to where you started when you expect that you might or for hours after. I get upset. I have things to do, and even if I don’t, not having that freedom is a very constricting feeling to experience.
One of the big things that I try to keep enacting in my relationship with my father is to have space between us, and a lot of that is my ability to remain my own agent of motion. That is why Simon and I are best friends. With him, I am able to move freely between places and of my own accord.
So when Dad insisted that we take one car, I freaked out.
No. I’d prefer that you respect my wishes.
There were words exchanged, fueling a situation that had already become nearly category 4. Serious business. I knew there was no going back, there never is.
It ended with us going our separate ways, now on a desperate drive to reach Cherry Creek Mall before the other one. We met there and retrieved the computer. There were words exchanged, more of those pesky things. They hurt sometimes.
I am upset that he accuses me of being a nasty ungrateful person and he’s hurt that I’m holding onto the privacy thing.
Reviewing the situation is tough for me. I acted immaturely. I let my emotions get the best of me. I shouldn’t have. This is something that I strive to fix, although the summer has been remarkably free of incident. To have made it six weeks is somewhat of an anomaly, so I’ll take it. I’m afraid that this repair is going to be held over my head for quite awhile and I detest that.
However, the incident serves as a reminder that no matter how mature I’d like to pretend I am, I still have a lot of learning to do. I have a lot of focusing to practice and perhaps that deep breathing to master.
Either way, I’m wildly grateful for the way my computer looks now; the screen is gorgeous and the new top (which was unnecessary) is gorgeous also. I’m alright with these things.
I’m not alright with how the situation went down (happened). I should have been calmer, I should have just taken my computer with me.