Writing on a real personal level is something I have tended to stray away from on this blog. For the most part, I’ve tried to keep it upbeat, jovial and sometimes juvenile. Today marks Father’s Day and more importantly for myself, it’s my first Father’s Day.
I want to share something with you all and it’s something I’ve never told my family or friends and I dare didn’t share it on a blog of all places. A lot of it was because of embarrassment and shame. I’ve always prided myself on being the “happy-go-lucky fun guy” in the group. For so long, it was all a facade. Before my daughter was born, I was in a bad state mentally. I was depressed, unhappy, mad at the world, questioning my self-worth, mad at everybody, mad at myself. It was so ironic because at one point through all of it my mother even commented on how I was possibly depressed but I wrote it off. *Proving a mother really does know all things*
There was a lot going on in my life personally and multiple demons I was battling. Waking up every morning was a chore. During this time, a baby was on the way and that was always the one motivating factor that gave me a glimmer of hope. There was my girlfriend who was with me every step of the way (God, bless her) while I tried to make sense of everything I was going through. It was grueling and extremely tough on her and our relationship. Meanwhile, multiple people questioning whether we should even be having a baby just compounded every negative emotion I was going through. I made it a point to avoid seeing my friends and talking to family as little as possible. I uttered words at home about myself that I’m so ashamed to even write. Depression was a real deal.
So much anger and sadness was bottled up inside me. There was never any sort of cry for help because who wants to give the appearance of weakness?
Then on June 25, 2019, my daughter Emery was born.
And with that moment, it was like all the anger and sadness I had was wiped away and my heart was able to open up and truly love again. I questioned the point of my life multiple times and found my calling. She was right there in front of my eyes. A helpless little soul now relied on me and it was my job to be her protector.
I won’t lie, everything I felt didn’t go away overnight. The healing process took time but it started. There was still residual resentment, sadness and anger that I’ve slowly moved on from and probably always a work in progress. I don’t want my daughter to live in a household of hate and the only way to achieve that is to lead by example. And I certainly don’t want her to live in a world of hate and I hope society can get there one day.
There are times I’m sure people look at me or see what I post and gag over the amount of love I proclaim for my daughter. Maybe they can see why now. I’m forever indebted to her. There was a man who was once lost in life and honestly wouldn’t have cared if the worst came his way. She took that man by the hands and taught him how to be patient, be kind, be generous, how to not just love others but himself. Through the help of my daughter and her amazing mother whom I both love more than anything, I have a family that I owe everything to.
Looking back on some of the blogs I wrote during that time, it almost feels like I was going through the motions. Some people may not be able to see it but it’s almost like my voice was robotic. And now, there’s a rejuvenated step in how I feel when I write. Aside from all that, I wake up everyday excited for what’s in store. Seeing my daughter’s excited face every morning brings the type of joy that’s unmatched……even when the rare hangover is taking place. One day, my daughter may read this. If she does, I want her to know something.
You saved my life, Emery. You formed me into someone I’m proud to be. I owe you the world. I love you.
On a completely side note, if you’re ever really down, depressed or upset, talk it out with others. Don’t be like me and bottle it up. It hurt more than it helped. Push the pride away and open up.
Happy Father’s Day.
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1 thought on “How Fatherhood Saved My Life”
Thank you for sharing this. As someone who has struggled with depression, I can empathize at how difficult that must have been. Your daughter is beautiful, and as lucky as you know you are to have her in your life, she is equally as lucky to have you as a father. Hers is the gift of meaning and purpose in your life and yours is the gift of unconditional love for the rest of hers. Have a very happy Father’s Day 🙂