Bloggers Note: This is Part 1 of 7 of ‘Magical Bonds: Parents & Children Letter Series’
Through those lens, he may not come across as the most sympathetic or loveable of characters.
However, I have also learned that there are often many perspectives and depths to a human being than what is being portrayed, ‘sold’ or projected to us. This is often more so when the concerned person is a star, (the father of a mega star), or has to live under the limelight in any shape or form.
Whatever has been written about him, whether as an allegedly cheating spouse, abusive father, overly strict business man, I do give him and his wife , Katherine, great credit for raising (in my jaundiced opinion of course 🙂 ), seemingly humble, courteous and talented children who gifted the world with unforgettable songs, performances and timeless legacy. The picture is not perfect but then again, which family really is? This is no mean feat considering the times, culture and climate under which it was achieved.
The focus of this piece is not on the character analysis of Mr Joe Jackson, rather it is on a letter he wrote which resonated with daughters across the world (and based on some of the discussions I’ve been a part of on some parenting and coaching fora), his words seem to have also ignited something in both parents and children.
Not too long ago, Joe Jackson wrote a heartfelt letter to his baby daughter, Singer, Song Writer, Dancer, Actress…And as we would say back home in Nigeria, #DoroMegaSuperStar: Janet Jackson. To me, the letter is an odyssey and tapestry of so many multi-layered things: the power of limiting beliefs and negative emotions, passed on to us by people we love and trust, especially when we were young and the unresolved significant emotional events that unconsciously shape or run our lives.
More importantly, seeing Mr. Joe Jackson’s alleged letter to his baby girl, as a metaphor, it also shows the catharsis experienced from writing down and expressing all our repressed emotions, the beautiful, yet very fragile bonds between parents and their children, in particular, fathers and daughters, the art and heart of asking for and giving forgiveness (especially self-forgiveness), the miracle of unconditional love, the timelessness of loving memories, the beauty of family and the power of words to either hurt and belittle OR to connect and heal deeply ingrained wounds….
To all fathers, mothers, daughters and sons, may you find acceptance, forgiveness, joy, healing and love regardless of the challenges, hurts and disappointments of the past. Know that everyone is doing the best they can with the tools and resources they have. Look back, armed with empathy and a pair of new lens and re-frame your past, so that you may begin to tell empowering stories about yourself and others. The journey may sometimes be difficult, however, the first step is to DECIDE!
Have an awesome week ahead everyone. Remember, whatever you do, sow seeds of value, service and love. Tell and show your kids that you love them and are proud of them. Sometimes, the ‘little’ things make the biggest difference. The world outside can sometimes get crazy, create a haven, a safe place of love and support for your children. It matters.
Do you have an inspiring ‘father-mother-daughter-son’ story, letter or anecdote you’d want to share? We’d love to hear from you! Drop a comment or join the conversation on our Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/wholewomannetwork
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Enjoy a father’s loving letter to his beloved daughter below:
“Janet, the youngest in the family is very very,smart. She was more like a tough kid. She was real rough. I mean she was rough. What do they call them… yes … tomboy. She was a tomboy. She could whop all the girls. Really rough and really, really smart. She is really easy nowadays. She has mellowed. She is now married and living a good life with her husband.
I always felt that she was a natural when it came to acting. She did that movie, with the late Tupac Shakur. I thought it was a very good movie, and I was very proud of her performance. As great and known as a singer as she is, I think the world has yet to recognize her extremely great talent as an actress that surpasses her singing.
She wants to have a good part in a strong action movie. I can’t wait to see her in one.
She did surprise me once, picking me as her date to the premiere of the movie she did with Eddie Murphy. Now Eddie is a great friend and I consider him one of this generation’s greatest comedians, but right in the middle of watching the movie, as proud as I was of Janet, I never let her know that. She asked me what I thought and I remember telling her: “You should be bigger than this. You should be the lead actor in the movie and carrying it”.
I know the comment upset her, because she became quiet and I knew it. But i know her so well, that I knew she was going to channel that anger to prove that she could do better and was right. She came back even stronger with greater movies. And you have not seen the best of her yet. That’s my girl.
When I suffered 4 strokes last year, and was in the hospital recovering, only two people in my family traveled all the way to see in the hospital. My granddaughter Brandi (Jackie’s daughter) and my baby girl Janet. She sat right next to me as I lay in bed, spent time with me, talking about a lot together. It meant a lot to me. I lay there listening to her as she talked about how she was going to get married. I am happy for her and wish her nothing but the best ! I never tell you this, but I am proud of you Janet.”