Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Don’t be a stranger, dad*

Your children need your presence

Nigel Telesford with his son, Levi Nelson Navarro Telesford.

Ten years ago, I wrote and published a story on Father’s Day about seeking out, finding and finally meeting my father after 27 years of me never having even seen his face. It was an extremely frank and very emotional article, which resulted in numerous comments, commendations and some criticism from dad’s side of the family.
Some relatives weren’t too happy with the way I bluntly expressed my feelings on my father’s absence, or his penchant and apparent pride for his promiscuous ways, but he himself didn’t hold anything against me at all. I visited him in the US soon after our initial meeting and he also returned to Trinidad a couple times since then. We speak regularly via WhatsApp and have a greater understanding of each other, but there’s still that canyon of a void that comes from growing up without someone who should have been present.
My grandfather was an awesome role model and his “larger than life” character and personality enriched mine with many positive and admirable traits, but despite his valiant effort to fill the role, there are still many questions left unanswered and many experiences left undone.

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