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Nov 29, 2023Liked by Ally Hamilton

Reading this with so many things going through my head. That photo of your father when you are around four years old: he’s the apotheosis of the swinging Silent Generation guy, making up for “lost time,” or “lost youth.” Reminds me of my own father and all his best buds in the fast, loose, freewheeling 1970s.

Both my parents died in 2015. My son, now a robust five-year-old, was born in 2018. My desire to nurture and nourish him in a manner diametrically opposed to what my own parents did has somehow opened me up to trying to reconstruct the manner of their upbringing, how it warped them. I can really see it, for the first time. And the best thing is knowing that yes, I came into this world through them, but I don’t have to be anything like them.

I didn’t miss them much at first, after they croaked. Maybe just a little bit now. I want to say, thank you for the good things you gave me. And: look! It doesn’t have to be like that!!

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Yes, we kids of the 70’s seem to recognize one another! And yes, my dad was the epitome of the 70’s swinger guy to an almost comical degree. It would have been funny if he hadn’t hurt so many women. My half sister Carrie told me he used to mow the lawn of their house at the end of a cul de sac in a tiny white Speedo, and that she begged him to wear shorts like the other dads but he wouldn’t be dissuaded.

And yes again, one of the most healing experiences I’ve had is getting to give my own children the kind of childhood I wish I’d had. It’s such a blessing to see my kids grow and feel curious and confident because they have love and stability and are being received with joy and gratitude. We all deserve that but we don’t all get it and I suppose that’s one of the things that makes life interesting. So happy to have connected with you.

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Nov 29, 2023Liked by Ally Hamilton

Likewise!

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Nov 29, 2023Liked by Ally Hamilton

The awe I have for your resilience can’t be adequately expressed at this time.

I wish I could be here tomorrow, in my family it was never my dad. Dad’s a fucking saint.

The irony that my mother’s severe dementia has been the only time that the relationship with her became honest and vulnerable, when I finally recognized the broken child inside of her.

Substack won’t allow me to complete what I’ve written. Probably and rightfully paid subscribers only..

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Hi Laurie! I haven’t put posts or comments behind a paywall so you should be able to comment as much as you’d like. Maybe Substack was having a glitch or something? I’d love to hear where you were heading.

I have a feeling we’re going to relate. It wasn’t until my mother was dying in the ICU, literally the last few weeks of her life, that we FINALLY and very thankfully healed our relationship. Life is so strange sometimes.

I hope you come back and finish your thoughts 🤍

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