16 Things My Father Never Told Me


It has been 13 years since my Father died. His birthday fell on the same weekend as Father’s Day.

I try to avoid everything Hallmark about this weekend because I still miss my father so deeply. We were always close and shared a symbiotic bond he never had with my brothers. We laughed at ridiculous things in life, usually my mother, and unfortunately shared the genetic bond of depression.

He was the one person who understood and accepted my dark.
He was a quiet man, but from him I learned some invaluable life lessons.

Robert L. Owen © Dori Owen All Rights Reserved

Robert L. Owen © Dori Owen All Rights Reserved

16 Things My Father Never Said:

1. Always be friends with the people who have no friends.
2. Make sure you have a place where you feel safe. It could be your home or the Nordstrom shoe department. Just have one.
3. So many things will frighten you. Storms, I know you are ridiculously afraid of moths, and strangers, but your biggest fear is having people see you as you see you.
4. You are so much more mighty than you know.
5. Change will be your only constant. You’re different than you were yesterday, and will be a different person tomorrow. This is a good thing. Especially if you didn’t want to be that person from yesterday.
6. You can be very cruel with your words and actions. This is something to kill with kindness.
7. If you feel like it, stay in your pajamas all day and don’t open the curtains.
8. Tell your real friends how you feel. Tell them at 2:00 AM or noon. But always tell them.
9. Loneliness does not have anything to do with the number of people around you. It’s about love. And how many of those people understand you.
10. Sometimes the most surprising actions will break your heart.
11. You can love someone and hate someone. At the same time.
12. You are going to be very good at many things. Making people laugh, being a good friend, and whatever career path you choose.
13. People come and go. Some are cigarette breaks, others are forest fires.
14. You won’t like your name until you hear someone say it with I love you.
15. Everything is going to be alright.
16. You are going to be alright.

May He Rest In Peace

May He Rest In Peace


Dori Owen

Dori Owen blogs on ArizonaGirlDiary.tumblr.com, is a columnist on FeminineCollective.com, a contributor/editor for The Lithium Chronicles, created the Facebook page Diary of an Arizona Girl, is an author on AskABipolar, was featured in the books FeminineCollective RAW&UNFILTERED VOL I and StigmaFighters Vol II, and is a zealous tweeter as @doriowen. She's a former LA wild child who settled into grownup life as a project manager, collecting an MBA and a few husbands along the way. Dori spent her adult years in Southern California, with a brief stay in Reno, and has now returned to where she ran away from in Arizona. She is a shown artist, writer, and her favorite pastime is upcycling old furniture she finds from thrift stores. She lives with her beloved rescued terrier, Olivia Twist, and the cat who came to visit but stayed. The love of her life is her grown son in Portland, Oregon who very much resents being introduced after her pets. But she she does love him the most.

15 thoughts on “16 Things My Father Never Told Me

  1. doriowendoriowen

    Dena, I’m so sorry about your Dad. I was sad for so long. Hard times to replace the hole they leave in our lives. I love your Dad’s advice. He sounds exactly like mine…so practical. He’d always tell me to park near store entrances. By the time I got anywhere he’d have me scared to death, LOL!

    Ugh. Father’s Day. I don’t even like walking past the Father’s Day cards displays….too many reminders. I do have two brothers to lean on for father figures, and that helps…but it’s not the same. I sure appreciate you reading my essay and taking the time to comment, Dena. xD.

  2. doriowendoriowen

    OMG OMG OMG it’s nearly as good as lunch at The Elephant Bar! You’re hereeeeee! I love you for reading this and I love you for commenting….and I don’t need to say I miss you like crazy. How much? Well, girl, you star in my blogs…truth!



    I don’t know if Paula would want to read Lost In Transition–your choice. If you send it to him, tell him I wrote it with great love and a homage to someone I deeply admire. Damn, girl, I need a trip to Laguna!


  3. Dena@TheReluctantJaneiteDena@TheReluctantJaneite

    Hi Dori: This is a beautiful piece. My dad passed away just before Thanksgiving, November 2014. Father’s day is difficult but so many days I miss him and wish I could ask him things. And also I try to remember all things he told me. “Wherever you go — always remember to check where all the exits are.” “Watch when you are walking — who is behind you, etc.” “Have some coffee you’ll feel better.” And my favorite: “Don’t work too hard.”

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