Friday, October 31, 2014

Black sheep come home

Earlier this week, when I got to work, one of my pals told me, "I have a favour to ask you."

As usual, I said, "Shoot!" Didn't know what I'd gotten myself into, but, as long as it wasn't anything too 'illegal', I was ok with not knowing what till he came to collect the favour.

Later in the morning they called me to the boardroom where Francis(the cameraman) had setup his equipment. A request I found odd was asking if I had carried my phone. Of course I didn't have it. Why do I need my phone anyway? Nooo! You want me to reveal saucy texts? But but I don't have anyone to send those to...

"No. We want you to call your dad on camera and tell him you love him"

"Huh? You want what!?"

Yeah, it was confusing, a mixture of emotions. See, while I'm not the dictionary definition of a black sheep, I come pretty close. For most of my life I have been cut off from most people emotionally, especially my dad.

Without revealing too much, all I can say is my memories of being a teenager aren't exactly pleasant, and I'd rather go through life never admitting I have ever been a teenager. With good reason too!

To cut a long story short, after growing up feeling abandoned and making a lot of mistakes, I came to realize that bitterness will never get you anywhere. Especially looking at how I'm slowly managing to shape me into the image of what I believe is the ideal person, I think I have more to be thankful for than to be bitter about. Which includes not allowing hate to be a part of me.

I guess if being clinically depressed is what was needed for me to quit being a little unemotional bitch, then it was worth it because while it may have taken away four years of my youth, it also made me eventually realize that I'm not alone in this world. This year has been especially trying on my family, with me almost dying twice. Ok, maybe I've exaggerated the second instance, since it involved surgery. Point is, they have been through a lot. I'm lucky because I lost part of my memory so I don't have to deal with most of the emotions that were involved at the time.

So here I was standing in front of a camera, I'd been asked to call my dad and say those three words. The topic of men not being able to express their feelings verbally has been the subject of countless articles and hence already familiar to many, therefore I don't have to discuss them in this entry. As the call was connecting I had enough time to think.

My dad has not been there for most of my life, physically he was, but emotionally no. In retrospect, I think he just didn't know what to do with me. I was the first born, so it would be unfair to judge him by it, especially seeing the good job he did with my brother and sister. It would be unfair to judge him remembering the numerous times he tried to set things right with me when I was in campus, and I was the one who consciously and knowingly resisted.

When I was depressed I guess it made it even harder for them because I cut off most people and moved out because I wanted to be alone. I could see they could sense something was wrong with me but I didn't want them to, this was my burden. Of course I knew I was depressed, but I also knew it is an expensive disease and I wanted to handle it on my own.

The call connected. My dad's voice. During the small talk as I tried to find a way of introducing those three little words into the conversation I remembered the events of this year. 

This has been the most dramatic year of my life. It counts as the first year since 2009 that my mind became my own again. The idea of killing myself isn't that new so I can casually talk about it. I guess. But the gravity isn't lost to me. My family didn't take it lightly, and only my immediate family(and now the world) know how close I came to allowing the world to beat me into a corner and giving up. And I owe them for always being there for me. For once in my life I decided to open up myself to my family and allow them to see me as the person I have become. Deep inside I know I've always loved them. The heavy veil of mental illness couldn't snuff that out. I just had to look and admit the fire was there.

As we were talking I knew that while I never tell them verbally that I love them, everything I've done this year has been also been geared at showing them I know what I put them through, I know they never left my side even though I couldn't see them. I owed them the verbal confirmation.

I forgot the camera was there and just said what I have been meaning to say most of this year. I'm sad it took being asked by a third party to do it, but like the depression, the end justifies the means.

No more black sheep