For me, it’s an old riff on an older rift. My ‘pops’ did the dodge-and-ditch move early. Remarried, to a child bride, who he’s always treated better than my mother or myself. He abused my mom verbally and physically. Thankfully I only caught the verbal personally. I had a school friend whose father raped and sexually abused her until she left home, so by comparison my father wasn’t so bad.
Properly traumatized and with little supervision, I was pregnant at 13 just in time for my first pelvic exam. Forced into abortion, I said goodbye to my first son, and coincedentally to the boy who would have been my first baby daddy. Hardheaded Aries that I am, I repeated this process twice in my early 20s.
Don’t get it twisted, I never had low self-esteem, I was never looking for a father figure in my male companions. Surprisingly, I eventually found Fathers. My first love came to live with me years after we broke up, and brought his son with him. I loved him and his boy like family.
As the years passed I watched my friends, homies, cousins and lovers grow and develop as they started their own families. Some of them kept it tight, some have gnarly babymamas, some are cool with being two-household parents…one even got married! Sadly most are single dads. But through love, friendship, babysitting, nannying and sometimes damn-near stepmothering; I learned what fatherhood is all about.
To the beautiful Fathers who have blessed me with the joy of their seeds, and to all whose children I’ve fed, I love you eternally if you never give me a biological child. I live and breathe to energize our universal family.
For the real fathers out there who love, respect and care for the youth – blood or by bond – I salute you. Every day is your day.
And to the janky, nasty, gnarly, no-count, mean-spirited, lying, broke-down, ruthless, trifleing babydaddies out there – you know who you are – don’t let the door hit you on the way out to the boulevard of broken promises. And oh yeah, happy father’s day, motherfuckers.