When my dad left us, it affected me the most. I was so inconsolable, so heartbroken. A piece of me left the day he did. Everything reminded me of him; the music we listened to, the television programs we watched, the comic books I read. The pain was so unbearable and intolerable.
I was so upset and angry all the time. I was upset with myself for playing a part in my dad’s departure. I wondered why I got involved, probably all could have been settled and we could have all moved on. Ironically, prior to my dad leaving, everything was ok for me in Switzerland. I had friends, I was opening up more, making great effort in class and my teacher liked me. Sadly, all the good progress I was doing for the past couple of months, came crashing down. My teacher and classmates didn’t stand a chance. My anger and wrath was so unbearable for everyone around me. The one who suffered the most was my mother, for I blamed her for my dad leaving us, when in reality it was my dad’s own doing.
My character alone was not easy for people to deal with me; I was so headstrong, stubborn, I never ever liked being told what to do. Yet the only person who was like me and who knew how to deal with me was my father. You can imagine how everyone had their work cut out with me. My mum tried to put up with me, it was clear she needed support and fast. My teacher also suggested it as my behaviour was deteriorating by the second.
It’s funny in a way that I was the version of my dad, he always wanted a boy, I was a tomboy, I was rough, was dressing like a boy and acting like one too. I couldn’t stop and calm my behaviour yet I had to be stopped otherwise I would face an expulsion. The school gave my mum an ultimatum, either I see a psychologist or I will face an imminent expulsion. Backed in a corner, my mum arranged for me to see a psychologist. At first, I wasn’t pleased to the idea to speak to a stranger about my own issues. The first few sessions, I wasn’t opening up. I was wondering how was that going to help? Bring my father back? I had no choice it seemed. So I started to open up. I explained how my father meant so much to me, how I hated living in Switzerland at the beginning and the only reason it was bearable was because of my dad. I also explained how racism affected me and still did at the time. Surprisingly, I was allowed to be myself and be completely honest as well as understand my own behaviour more. I came to realise I wasn’t a bad person, but I was just so hurt and it made me angry as well as rebel against the world. Undoubtedly, the pain caused by my dad leaving was the worse pain imaginable. It would take many years for the pain to fade. The racism I faced, even though it was so horrific, was somehow manageable as I could easily forget about it and read or watch my many cartoons I came to love so much.
Seeing a psychologist, didn’t heal my pain, but helped me express my pain and understand also that what happened between my parents wasn’t my fault. Of course, my behaviour didn’t improve much at school, but as we did what the school requested, I was able to stay there for the time being. I remember how my mum turned to God in our hour of need. We used to go to church almost everyday after school. My faith also helped me find some solace and peace at times. We were so blessed literally that even the church community put up with me as my mischievous ways reached there also. I would sleep sometimes during mass, or I would break the Sacramental bread and wanting to see the Father’s reaction if he discovered it. I was truly a pain to deal with. People around were ever so patient with me, many families looked past my behaviour and in a way accepted me the way I was.
No matter what, my dad left a huge gap that could never be filled. I needed a distraction and moreover, I am sure everyone around me wanted me to be distracted too as my behaviour was worsening, even while seeing a psychologist.