Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Complicated Relationships


emma_tony, originally uploaded by panthergirl.

As I mentioned in yesterday's post, my daughter Emma (now almost 20) had become estranged from Tony by the time he became ill.

She was five when I met him and they bonded immediately. He loved her as though she was his own child. I think he gave her shoulder-rides to school until she was about TEN.

Although they loved each other intensely, they would also have incredibly wicked fights once she got to be about 9 or 10 (she had a year of PMS, I think). These would often take place when I was out and couldn't "referee". (Ultimately, when our marriage broke down and Tony became verbally abusive, she shut him out completely which was heartbreaking for him. It just goes to show how loyal children are to their parents in those situations.)

ANYWAY... one day when she was about 11 they had a huge fight and she said "You're not my father...you're just some stupid guy my mother married." And then, "Get your fucking ass out of my room." (she was a piece of work, I tell ya). I came home just in time to send them to their respective corners, and after she had cooled off she wrote him this:

(click to enlarge)

emma_letter

It still makes me giggle to read it, especially with the use of the flowery font. It's hard to believe, though, that she went from this level of affection to never wanting to speak to him again within a few short years. She did attend the memorial service when he passed away, but mostly out of support for her brother and me. Life and relationships are complicated indeed.