It’s my dad’s birthday. He’s 69. It just feels so old. I don’t know. I have, as you know, a lot of mixed feelings about my dad. I’m sometimes jealous of people who just easily adore their dads. I do adore my dad, but it’s not always easy. He just needs so much–which drives me nuts and makes me feel terrible that, whatever the hell he needs, I both can’t always figure it out or give it to him, just for my own well-being.

Like his weird issue lately with wanting me to write about “real” things and how I’d have more success as a writer if I’d write about said “real” things.

On so many levels, just no. And yet, I’m pushing 40 and I still feel this strong urge to write things my dad approves of. I have to catch myself, and remind myself that, really, what I write isn’t his business and trying to steer my career on his part is, at best, bothersome and, at worst, well, what it is.

I feel lucky, in many ways, to have the dad I’ve had. But I’m struggling to learn that gratitude doesn’t mean that I then do whatever he wants. It’s a hard lesson.

Still, I hope we both live long enough to learn to be at ease with each other in ways we aren’t yet.


Two More Things on That Thing

This and this. I especially want to get back to the second one, because I think it articulates more clearly part of what I’ve been wrestling with–the role of certainty in this whole thing.