I am participating in a month-long A-to-Z blog challenge. My theme is ... The Music of My Life.
Everyone has that moment in life when they realize something so profound and paradigm-altering that it marks the beginning of an era. For me, it was realizing that the man I had been calling “Daddy” for as long as I could remember was actually my dad.
My cousin, Erin, who was three years older than me, lived in Roanoke, but she stayed with me at my grandparents’ house every holiday and the entire summer. We were the closest thing that either of us had to a sister. While sitting in the car one day with my mom and waiting for my grandmother and cousin to come out of the grocery store, she told me that Erin’s parents were divorcing.
“What’s divorce?” I asked.
“Her parents aren’t going to live together anymore.”
“Why?” I asked.
“They just grew apart. They weren’t getting along anymore.”
“But why?” I asked. My seven-year-old mind just couldn’t comprehend the reason why anyone would stop living with their husband or their wife.
“It’s like your dad and me,” my mom said. “We couldn’t get along, and we finally had to divorce.”
“What? What do you mean?”
My mom laughed. “Well, yeah. How did you think your dad became your dad?”
Honestly, I didn’t know. It had simply never occurred to me that Mom and Dad had ever been married or had ever lived together. I was completely shaken to the core by this news. On some level I figured that I called this man “Daddy” just like someone would call someone “Uncle” when they weren’t, actually. But suddenly, everything clicked. This explained the reaction my dad had when I’d told him that I figured I would just start calling him by his first name, and I would switch to calling my stepfather “Dad.” This explained why I saw him every week, albeit only for an afternoon and only at my grandparents’ house.
Worlds collided in my head. Why hadn't anyone ever explained this to me before? How had I not known this? I never looked at my dad the same way after that. This was how I learned the true meaning of divorce.
And the soundtrack to that time of my life? The Commodores…
What was a moment in your life that changed everything?