Today is Father’s Day, with a potent Full Moon in Sagitarrius tomorrow, Summer Solstice and Eclipses upon us…an astrologically transcendant time. I don’t expect many of you to like my Rumination today. It’s not the Hallmark kind – instead it’s a sharing of my personal experience as a 9 year old daughter, to a father in the Air Force who chose to leave his family and leave me, so I felt. I was lead to believe at the time, my father left to valiantly fight in some noble, far away war – the Vietnam war. To me, this was an odd choice for my father to make. He didn’t have to go. He wasn’t drafted. He was an esteemed professor who had his tenure at the Air Force Academy. “But he had to go,” so he said.
To children, the father leaving, under any circumstances is hard to understand and even harder to accept. For the wife and mother too, on a deeper level, it’s hard for her to understand why her man would choose war over her and their children. Rejection, abandonment and loss through war, runs deep in the heart of the family, affecting many generations to come.
My father left for the Vietnam War, just before my 9th birthday – some 50 years ago. Yes, we survived as a family and yes my father survived the war, but he never emotionally gained traction again or regained his loving balast as the male heart of the family. He was ridden with PTSD – though in 1969, there was no such acknowledgement or treatment for that very real, post-war condition. My father did the best he could, but a few years later, at the first chance he got, when I, as the youngest, was only 21, my father left our family. As adult children, we would say, “when Dad divorced our Mom, he also divorced the family.
“He had to go,” so he said.
I haven’t seen my father in nearly 30 years. I don’t know if my father is dead or alive right now. It’s a most precarious position to be in, as the only daughter, once very bonded to my father; his companion as an avid fly fisherman, ice skater and lover of nature.
I have to tell you, there’s a lot I don’t like about the military, and nothing I like about war, including it various forms of brainwashing. I am not a believer in war as a solution to problems…ever. I believe wars tear the fabric of the family system, like no other. As utopian as it may seem, I believe there ought not, be need for war in the first place. I believe, that those who promote war as heroic, have little conscious understanding of protecting the true integrity of the family system, especially of women and children. I believe we’ve all been fooled to think that by waging war and going to war, we are protecting our famililies and our country. Rather, I believe that by actively staying with your family, is how one protects them, as well as honors them, and their country.
I have managed to rise, as the rose, like a phoenix from the ashes – through amazing partnerships, loverships, kindness, long walks in nature and very good care. My heart is still open to love. There’s a lot I like about people and this beautiful world still; like nature, good food, good company and music.
Though these two songs may pull on your heart strings, I hope you enjoy them. They are songs of the Vietnam era, and even though I was only 9 years old, I resonated with them deeply then and still do now.
I wish you all a very Beautiful Father’s Day. Remember, war is not the answer. Love is. Will we ever learn, that Love is All there is? With all my Heart, I hope so.