A Father Is Always

Posted on March 25, 2011

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A father is always making his baby into a little woman. And when she is a woman he turns her back again.
— Enid Bagnold

This is pretty long.  It’s worth it though.

Let me tell ya, it has been one heck of a day!  Got the boys an hour earlier than expected.  The boys were extremely difficult today.  Spitting, hitting, biting and so on.  AND I had to extra kiddos as the girls had friends over.  I was completely to my stress limit.  The boys’ dad finally came and got them and I breathed a big sigh of relief.  Emily had asked if she could spend the night with her mom because she was very much missing her mom.  So Keith and I ran her over there.  We stopped on the way home to check on the boys and their dad.

They were jumping on the bed, screaming, telling him “No!” over and over.  Jumping into a portable bed.  Throwing pillows.  It was horrid.  We left.

I had left my phone in the car and when I got home, I checked my phone before getting out of the car.  I had a missed call from the girls’ stepdad.  He was calling to tell me the real reason Emily wanted to go home.  Turns out her little friend was on the laptop upstairs, when Em came downstairs.  When Em went back upstairs, she saw what was on the laptop.  After her friends left, Em shared with Katie what had happened.  Kate looked at the history and about the same time, I was walking in the door having this conversation, Keith was having his own conversation with Katie, whipping out the laptop and looking at the history.

The little girl was looking up things a little girl shouldn’t look up.  I won’t publicize it on here.  She’s nine.  I know it’s normal to be curious, but … ummm… no.  Not in my house and it shouldn’t happen in anyone’s house.

Keith explains to Kate that they are not in trouble (Em thought they would be).  He is so loving and patient when he explains anything to them, but tonight he did a superb job.

We head off to bed.  Keith and I are talking and he tells me he is feeling a lot of guilt over the pain he caused when he left the girls’ mother.  After a moment, he left the room to go to talk to Katie.  I don’t know specifically what he said, but over the music, I did hear some. He was apologizing for leaving her when she was little and explaining to her it was never her fault.

There were a lot of tears.  Which made my own tears fall even harder.  I feel that guilt Keith has too.  And it broke my heart tonight.  I haven’t ever ached for Katie like I did tonight.

After a while, I went into the living room, heading to get something to drink, when something drew me into the conversation. I don’t remember what now, but I was privy to the rest of the conversation.  The details don’t matter, but it really and truly was the most beautiful father/daughter moment I have ever seen.  Keith has an amazing way with words and has such love for the girls and lets it show.  He shines.

By this point, we were all three crying like babies and Katie cried, “I hate snot fests!”

I went and got my drink and came back to talk to Katie myself.  I knew better than to get to deep with her.  That’s for her and her dad.  And too many tears were shared tonight.  I told her, “I love you.  I hope you know that.  I love you as much as I love Abby, though I have loved her longer.  There isn’t anything I wouldn’t do for you.  Abby and I are friends now and we talk about tons of stuff and I hope one day y0u feel the same about me.”  Yup, snot fest.

She said she knew all that.  She went on to talk about how happy she is that she has me.  That she sees from Abby’s other family how a blended family situation could be and recognizes that she doesn’t have that.  She has a love filled home here and a family that loves her.  Apparently, I must be a good cook because in the midst of talking about why she is happy with me, she says “Oh and you are a great cook!” 🙂

An eleven year old showed me grace.  She didn’t have to be a great kid for me.  She had every right to hate me and rebel against me  completely.  And yet, I am delighted to call her my daughter.

Unlike Katie, I love snot fests.

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