Well 2.14.18 came and went. Last year I put it in my head that if the Hippie could pick a day to pass it would be 2.14. Not because we know that as Valentine’s Day but because that’s his lucky number. He used 214 for everything. Years back he told me he would only pay for my wedding if it was 2.14 so of course on 2.14.98 I almost married a terrible guy but I called the wedding off the summer before. I have huge abandonment issues. I probably have more issues than that because hello, have you read about my childhood?!? I don’t trust people. I am pretty sure I will be murdered in some horrific way (ok yes all murder is horrific). The last ten years or so I learned all these are due to his choices and I won’t chase him and beg for attention. He chose to turn my life upside down when he told me to find a new place to live when I was 16 because he wanted to move to Jamaica and become a full on drug Lord. I cannot tell you how many of my friends’ families took me in. I always had food and a place to sleep but it was a very strange few years. The terrible man I mentioned above was my version of escape but when you are raised with as much violence as I was, then you do not see the signs “normal” people might see. Some people think the step-monster was good for me but she was probably more toxic then the Hippie and Debbie. I once found a diary from when I was 8 or so and I was writing about lying on the living room couch watching the step-monster have a full melt down and she was throwing kitchen knives at my dad and they stuck in the wall. We no longer had a kitchen clock because she threw that at him and it shattered. Yes, with all this going on little Heather is sitting on the couch writing in her diary or reading a book because this was our normal! I don’t remember why she slapped me when I was wearing braces but the wire on my braces came loose and cut my cheek. I had to go to the Ortho to have it fixed and I still have a scar on the inside of my cheek to this day. It took me years to realize that my childhood was effed up because again it was my normal. I have seen the Hippie maybe 10 times since he was kicked out of Jamaica in 2005. I hurt for him because he’s my dad and I know he did the best he could. I know he loves me but he never chose me. He never chose to protect me from the step-monster. He was so focused on someone kidnapping me (ok again in his defense Debbie’s step-dad did make a threat) that he never thought to look at what the violence around us was doing. I laugh when I think back to when my husband and I first started dating. He has a “typical” family even though his parents divorced when he was in college; everyone gets along and loves each other. No drugs. No violence. Ross and I had only been dating six months or so and in this six months my 13 year old sister and her friend discovered her friends’ mothers body after she was raped by her boyfriend and her throat was slit. The girls walked right in her bedroom after being in the house about 30 minutes eating breakfast. Then the day before Valentine’s Day (1999) my sisters dad was shot five times at point blank range (he is still alive). Ross quickly got a glimpse of craziness. Even with this craziness Ross used to push me to interact with my family because simply they are family. Fast forward twenty years and Ross wants them no where around any of us. They are selfish. They are all toxic and still I hurt for the Hippie that he is sick. I cannot go to him. I cannot chase him because in the end he is still going to die and that will hurt me worse if I grow close with him again. If he wants to talk to me he will have to call me.
I don’t have a health update on the Hippy as we have not spoken since August 2017. My FaceBook On this Day is currently having me relive all the details of the Hippy’s surgery and recovery. Sometimes it makes me sad that this is all I have. Yes, I could call him but he could call me also. I am sure anyone reading this thinks I am a horrible cold person but I ask you to not look at this through your lens but through mine. I did not have a loving supportive family unit. The Hippy raised me and then kicked me out when I was 16 because he wanted to chase a dream. He missed my high school years. I was not able to attend college right after high school because of his decision to leave and live in Jamaica. He chose drugs over his child. He missed my wedding. He missed my first college graduation (ok he attended the second but for five minutes). He never had a Funeral for my grandmother when she passed away and she was my everything. I regress, here we are a year later and honestly I am cold and emotionless. Of course I wish him well but I also know that having your parents alive and not interested in you or your life makes me long for them to be gone so I no longer feel abandoned each time I think of them. Again, not really an update at all.
It’s been a real long time since I have posted. The truth is I don’t know how my Hippy is doing. I called in May and left a message on his home phone and called his cell. No answer and no call back. I called in June and left a message on his home phone and called his cell. No answer and no call back. I did text him on Father’s Day and he responded with a thank you which is a small miracle because he calls texts “emails”! I called yesterday and left a message at home and called his cell. No one answered and he didn’t call me back. I finally texted his best friend aka Uncle Glen yesterday and he told me that he spoke to my dad an hour prior and for me to only call the cell. This doesn’t worry me. This doesn’t concern me. Truth is I lost my dad when I was 16 and he moved to Jamaica. He wasn’t here when I was navigating the perils of high school. He wasn’t here to meet anyone I dated. He wasn’t here when my grandmother asked me to drop out of high school and get my GED because she needed me to work. He wasn’t here when I met my husband. He did come back when I had open heart surgery (for another post) but he called collect on my 21st birthday. He wasn’t here when I got married. He wasn’t here for our wedding reception and the step-monster refused to bring my grandmother because she is a vindictive bitch. He wasn’t here when I turned 30. He did show up when I graduated with my bachelor degree but of course missed my graduation when I received my associates degree. He is not here. My grandfather always said no news is good news so I am guessing his health is ok or maybe one day I’ll get a letter from the step-monster. Who knows. However what my Hippy taught me at an early age was that I am strong enough to be on my own and he taught me to Let Go. I found this today and just love it.
I spoke to the Hippy finally. The real shocker is he answered when the step-monster was home (she even cleared her throat once and he still didn’t hang up with me)! He said he is starting to feel a little better since his radiation treatments ended several weeks ago. He saw his doctor this week and he wouldn’t give me an exact weight number but said things like “it comes and goes” and “it’s more or less that” when I asked if he still weighed 107 pounds (he is six feet tall). I had Barney (my grandmothers dog that my husband wanted to take in after she passed away) in the car with me as I was talking to him while driving to work so he asked about Barney and we discussed him most of the conversation. I did ask him if he knows when the doctors will perform another CT scan to check his tumors. He said he thought it would be end of May or beginning of June but to his knowledge it is not scheduled yet. He went on to explain that his doctors (VA Hospital) are not in a super hurry to check on the tumors because once they discover it has progressed to the brain they are done with treatment (at least that’s what they said in the beginning of all this). I know a lot of people may not understand how disconnected my dad and I are but right now I have never been so happy that we are. I have always believed that people know certain things and he knew that he neeeded to raise me to be strong and independent. Moving out at 16 was not crazy to me or to anyone that knew my family. Having my dad gone for 10 years was not strange. Marrying a man my dad had only met one time two years prior was not strange. It was what it was! I still pray for peace every day for my Hippy!
I have not heard from the Hippy since my birthday on 4/8. I have left messages. My Uncle Glen told me this morning that tomorrow is the final radiation treatment (35) and I am not sure when they will check the tumor status.
I have not had much to say lately on purpose. My 39th birthday was 4/8/17 and I simply refused to think about anything unhappy. My husband and I celebrated in Las Vegas which we really needed! The Hippy worried me most of my birthday as he always calls and sings to me early (and never really knows where in the world I am). I had not heard from him or Debbie until late in the day and my husband did his best to keep me occupied. He took me to my favorite restaurant and then we went to visit the former MGM Lions at their habitat (this was the highlight of my birthday as I LOVE those lions and have had my picture taken with 2 of them back when they were cubs). Debbie finally texted around dinner time (PST) which would have been late for her but oh well she texted (we don’t really speak so this was a huge gesture for her). I had opted to not attend a show for my birthday as I was afraid I would miss a call from the Hippy (I have never worried about this in my life so I guess the reality that he might not be around at my 40th has started to sink in). The Hippy called me around 8:30 PST which is extremely late for him but I am sure his schedule is all wonky with not working and having daily radiation treatments. It was a short call and he mentioned how over dinner him and the step-monster discussed how I would have birthday parties each year at their house; and my Grandma Jane’s and the step-monsters parents would have a family party for me. Not sure why that was a memory for him but it was the first he had ever told me that he thought about all that. My thoughts on my 39th was how the last birthday I spent with the Hippy I was 16 and got my Mustang. The Hippy had Debbie and Danny over and several of his friends (my Uncles). Terrie and the kids came too and the Hippy flew one of my next door neighbor girls, Natalie, (who had moved to Austin) down for the weekend. The step-monster wrote a poem and placed the poem and my school picture in the paper and my dad had the poem read on my favorite radio station to announce my birthday. That was it. Two months later he left for Jamaica. He missed my 17th completely. He was home for my 18th (from Jamaica) and visited me at my friends house where I was living and took several of my friends to dinner. He missed 19-20 completely (Jamaica) but on my 21st he called very late in the evening (collect lol) and I spoke to him briefly. I had open heart surgery 4 months after my 21st birthday and he did come back for my surgery (another long story). He missed 22-25 (Jamaica) but has called for every single one 26-39! I pray he makes it to my 40th!
I did not get into his health when he called me as I only had about 3 minutes on the phone with him. This Wednesday, 4/12/17 will be his 30th radiation and last I heard he has 35 total.
I called and talked to my dad this morning. He sounded very down and tired. They have added 5 more treatments so today is 20 of 35. He does get his hearing aid today which I am hoping will cheer him up. His weight is holding at 107 (he is 6 feet tall). I can tell when Lynn (aka Step-Monster) walks in. He virtually shuts down on me and just ends our call!
My Hippy called to tell me that he completed his 10th round of radiation yesterday! He is very proud of himself. They will not do any further testing until 6 weeks after his last radiation. He is hopeful!
I was able to talk to my Hippy yesterday as my uncle had texted that the step-monster would be out all day! He sounds bored but struggling to be good. He said it’s really tough to be hopeful. His face is swollen still and he still has stitches in his face/mouth/eye/neck/legs. His weight is holding steady at 107. He finished his 6th radiation treatment yesterday and he now drives himself. Two weeks after the 30th radiation they will run new tests. They remind him daily the cancer will spread and they are hopeful it’s South and not into the brain as the tumor was right at the brain stem cells. The step-monster walked in and he had to go but this time I believe he was able to hang up before she discovered it was me! I’ll try again next week.
I talked to my favorite Hippy tonight. He started our very tired and sluggish but by the end of the call sounded like his younger self! He should get the remaining vacuum bag off of his neck tomorrow and start his radiation treatments (30 minimum). The doctor confirmed they did not remove the entire tumor as they tested the margins and it is not clear. We expected this as the surgeon said he could not safely cut any closer to his brain. His weight is steady at 107 (he is 6 feet tall). He said everyone is trying to feed him and went on and on about Aunt Lauren taking him food! He told me that Sunday they went to the grocery store and the man behind him in the checkout lane asked him if Jesus Christ could pay for his food. Thank you to this kind stranger. It meant a lot. He then spent 10 minutes telling me all the bikes he wants me to buy and send to him! It was nice to hear him dreaming and scheming again. We both know Step-monster would never let him on a bike again!