We Will Give It One More Try
Young Kyle was just done with another day at school and his father was there to pick him up but that did not happen very often. They had not seen much of each other ever since he had left the house after his mom asked his dad to leave. He had heard his parents argue over who he could take. His dad wanted to take Kyle, but his mom would not let him, and the older brother was the one who was sent packing. When he left, he took Kyle’s older brother to live with him.
As they walked to the truck, Kyle asked his dad, “Are you taking me home, or do I have to get a ride from one of my friends?”
“No, I will run you up there. Will your mother be home?”
Kyle, sitting on the passenger side, said, “Yes, she will, Dad. I want you to come in and see her.”
“No, I will just drop you off. I don’t want any arguments or anything.”
“Dad, I want you to come in and talk to Mom. I think she will let you come back.”
“I wish that were the case, son. No, I will just drop you off.”
“Come on, Dad. I am serious. She has been talking, and she misses you. You can get back in with us.”
His dad was now getting interested in this idea. “Do you really think she will take me back?”
“Yes, Dad, I do. That is why you have to come in.”
His dad said with a serious face, “You know, Kyle, I have missed you so much. I love you forever, son, and I do not know if you knew. I tried to take you with me, but your mother wouldn’t let me.”
“I know, ’I heard the two of you arguing.”
“Okay, if you think she will, I will come in and talk to her and, Kyle, I am doing this for you, and of course, the others, but you know, I love you so much.”
“I love you too, Dad. You won’t be sorry; I know she loves you.”
The two of them drove through the hills to the outskirts where their home was. His dad drove into the driveway and parked by the garage.
“Kyle, do you have an extra garage opener? I was thinking of getting in there and getting some of my tools.”
“No, I don’t, but you can come over any time and get them. But what are you talking about? You are going to come home. You don’t need to take any tools.”
They both got out of the truck and headed for the front door. As they came into the house, Kyle walked ahead of his dad to where his mother was standing in front of the kitchen sink doing some dishes.
Kyle said, showing a little excitement, “Mom, I brought Dad in. He picked me from school and brought me home.”
Kyle’s dad walked past him and toward his mother. “Hello, Elizabeth. It’s good to see you.”
Kyle’s mother looked straight ahead out the kitchen window while she stood over the sink.
“Why are you here, Bob?
“It is like Kyle said. I brought him home, and he suggested that I come in and say hello to you.”
“Well, you have done that. You can go now.”
“Liz, I want to come home. Can you let me back in? I miss all of you so much. You don’t know how many nights I have cried myself to sleep and that is not easy to say.”
Still looking straight out the window, his mom said, “No, it is not that simple. I am sorry Kyle gave you the wrong message. You can leave now.”
Kyle was now terribly upset. “Mom don’t do this. Let him come home. We all want him home.”
“Kyle, stay out of it,” she said as his dad headed for the door.
“Come on, Mom, let him talk to you. Please, just five minutes, you and him. He needs us so much and we need our father.”
“Kyle, I told you to stay out of it.” Kyle looked to the door, and his dad left. He went out to the Datsun truck where his dad was sitting in, and Kyle opened the passenger door and got in.
“I am so sorry, Dad. I didn’t know she was going to be that mean to you.”
“You know, she would not even look at me. That is what really gets me. After twenty-three years, and she will not even look at me,” as tears are showing on his sad face.
Kyle looked over at his dad as he started to cry. “Dad, it really hurts me to see you like this. I really feel bad that I had you come in.”
Wiping his eyes, his dad said, “It is over, Kyle. Your mother and I are finished. I am going to leave.”
“Dad, I am really sorry. I love you so much.”
“It is okay. I will call you soon.”
With that, his dad left, a defeated man, and Kyle had no idea how far into the darkness his father was going to go. If he only knew, he could have stopped the inevitable.
Kyle walked back into the house where his mom was sitting in her chair, watching her soap opera.
“Mom, what was that? I cannot believe how you treated Dad. You should have seen him crying in the truck.” Do you know that this is a man who has hit bottom, you have taken everything from him, does that not bother you mother?”
“I can’t help that, Kyle. You must let it go. Your dad and I are over, and he should know that and not get your hopes up. It’s too late.”
Kyle always remembered his mother saying, “It’s too late.” However his father remembered it more. It was a Thursday afternoon and his father asked him to meet him at the old house so they could load up the washer and dryer because they were selling the house now that mom and dad had broken up. The same old house that Kyle and his friend Steve had been at when his father was dying in his truck. His dad had asked him to help move the washer and dryer out of the old house they were selling. As they were unscrewing the hoses from the back of the washer, his dad said, “I am not doing well with you boys and your mother not around, and I don’t like this divorce, and to tell you the truth, I have been thinking of killing myself.”
Kyle immediately told his father, “What the hell did you just say? Excuse my language, but did you just say you wanted to kill yourself? Do not talk that way. You have so much to live for, and do not forget about your three sons, Dad. We will not be able to continue without you, and I am terribly upset that you would say something like that, Dad. Am I supposed to take this seriously? Get out of your depression and let us talk to Mom. I am sure she won’t continue to break up our family.”
“Well, Kyle, it sounds good, but the train has already left the station.”
“Don’t worry, Dad. Everything will get better, I promise,” Kyle said.
He continued to remember the conversation with his dad.
“When we sat down at the house and shared a Coke, Dad, you told me about our heritage. You said we are fighters, and we do not give up, and neither will you, okay? As soon as I know more about our family, I want to sit down with you, so stop that talk of killing yourself. Our family members are fighters, Dad, and that is what you need to do.”
Kyle shook his head, as the lightning cracked around him, bringing him back to the present which was a dark cloudy morning. Sitting at his kitchen table with a cup of hot coffee with a shot of Jameson in it, looking over his backyard, swimming pool, tennis courts, hot tub, horse corrals, and all the things he had provided for his family. How was he going to keep all these secrets? These were the questions going through his young mind. He was now going into an existence that he never dreamed of, one of secrecy and so far from anything normal.