I’ve never forgotten the time you nearly choked me to death as a child at Sunday School. You may not remember, but I certainly do. I was young and naive playing a game of musical chairs and was admittedly a bit over aggressive in my attempts to win such a childish game. However, the unforgettable predicament started when I did happen to be a bit malicious in claiming a chair for myself in order to win. But that’s when things went way out of line for you. You grabbed me harshly, especially when I was held up in the corner, both of your hands hoisting me up. Yet it was not the delicate hoist that a father should be known for, instead I was held by clenched hands gripping my weak neck. I felt the life being squeezed out of me. I squirmed my feet to be free of your grasp but I knew better than to hit you back as it would anger you further. I remember the way your hands felt as I began to see a white light and my life slowly drifted from me. Fortunately Mom was there to stop you from the manslaughter as she could tell I was slowly losing it. By it I refer to my life. My life. The one you seem countlessly disappointed in, the one where I never seem to do enough to fully please you. But the worst part is I never want your approval, never have I been able to fully respect you as my true father figure. I see the decisions you make, the arrogance you display and it disgusts me to think that I may end up like you some day. I strive for greatness. Although I am in my youth and I make more than my fair share of mistakes I feel I can learn from them. The Marines will most definitely help with that as well. The Marines will be the father figure I have longed for. The Marines will be my role model as I progress through life and its many challenges. I will look for its guidance and ask its advice on how to handle things. I know you’re one to “consult” the bible and are able to “interpret” it as you will but I don’t ask for that. I don’t think I ever have. Religion is what you make of it and if you’re not able to accept that then maybe you’re not seeing Jesus the way he’s supposed to be seen. I’m no scholar but I’ve heard the words of Ghandi when he said it best to be tolerant of everyone. Everyone should be treated equal. Even the gays. The gays that I know you are not too fond of. One thing I’ve come to realize is how you truly disowned our own uncle solely because he was interested in men. That is by no means to disown your own brother nor anyone. At the end of the day we are all human beings. We’re all in this together to inhabit this beautiful Earth and do the best we can with what we have. Now we all certainly don’t see eye to eye on everything but that is never a means to disown someone. We all have our own judgements and will answer to a higher power when the time comes but until then can we be happy with the lives we are given?
If you do happen to read this someday I hope that I have not been disowned by you. I pray for that not to happen because I take pride in our family name. I want to build a lasting legacy for our name to be known and carried on for generations to come. I’m a man of integrity and although I still am very young I look forward to building a name for myself. One that is unique and based on my actions alone. Whatever that may entail with the mistakes I may make. I am my own man and can own up to it. I’m an adult now, whether I like it or not I have the responsibility to carry on my own legacy and fulfill my own destiny. To answer the call on my own free will. The Marines may just be a stepping stone but from what I’ve seen its the necessary one in building myself up and learn the discipline of what it takes to be successful in this messed up world.
I know I have done some disappointing things and I’m not asking for forgiveness, nor do I dare to. What I’m asking for is you to see my point of view in all this, that I’ve seen how you handle things, how you handle yourself and others and I commend you for what you do but I want to do so much more. I want to be a difference in the world. I know I may sound cocky but I have an ambition for tackling problems and the willingness to serve those who are less fortunate. Although it may not seem like it all the time but I have dreams of a brighter tomorrow, of me making a difference in helping make that happen. What I want is for you to see that, recognize that. I’ll never ask anyone for respect. Respect is earned. What I ask for from you is to support me in my endeavors, you may not be proud; you may even hate me even more for it but if you truly are the father that I know you can be you will support me no matter what.