Saturday, 22 August 2015

Father and son. . .

Conversation series: 3rd and final conversation with a dear friend. . . 

It's not time to make a change
Just relax, take it easy
You're still young, that's your fault
There's so much you have to know
Find a girl, settle down
If you want you can marry
Look at me, I am old, but I'm happy

I've always loved this track by Cat Stevens (Yusuf Islam) because of his clever way of using the octave range to distinguish the voice of the father (low sections) with that of the son (higher sections) in this song.  In this final conversation with you, I thought about what you have shared with me about your father and I thought that this song was the perfect song to articulate some of the thoughts that I have about your relationship with him.

I was once like you are now
And I know that it's not easy
To be calm when you've found something going on
But take your time think a lot
Think of everything you've got
For you will still be here tomorrow
But your dreams may not

As much as you have shared about your father with me, there are some other instances when I wonder if there are other things you haven't shared.  I'm not saying that you should share them - that's totally up to you - but I think about whether you don't tell me everything because you're still trying to figure things out about him too. This is a positive thing too, because your relationship with him has improved somewhat since you have had a change in thinking about how you relate to him.  I think it's something that we as children often forget about our parents - that we can actually change the dynamics of our relationship to be more in tune with them because we can change; we are more willing to change than they are.  This can be a hard lesson to learn because it's asking us to move away from being "right" but more about just "being together".

How can I try to explain
When I do he turns away again
It's always been the same, same old story
From the moment I could talk 
I was ordered to listen
Now there's a way
And I know that I have to go away
I know I have to go

When the son sings here, I think about you.
I can imagine the frustration you must've felt with your father on many occasions and not known how to deal with it, hoping that because he was the adult, that he should know how to be the more mature one to act with compassion and care, to show you what love and respect between a father and son was supposed to be.  Have you found yourself going away often and not being able to speak because you have chosen to silence yourself and not be heard to avoid the aggravation?  that's no way to live.  You know that.  I know that you're working to rectify this - not in an aggressive manner, but in your own way of how you deal with things - withs no drama or stress, and with as little effort that is required to not make it such an ordeal.

All the times that I have cried
Keeping all the thing sI knew inside
It's hard, but it's harder to ignore it
If they were right I'd agree
But it's them they know, not me
Now there's a way
And I know that I have to go away
I know I have to go

I hope that you will in time have the relationships with your father that fulfils you and can be one that you are not only proud of, but that you are able to look on favourably as something viewed with gratitude.  Thank you for sharing your stories about your father with me.  It makes me appreciate my own relationship with my father and challenges me to think critically about how I can inspire other fathers and other sons to have greater relationships with their significant male relatives.

I hope that when you have to go away, that you are able to come back home to Dad :-)