Hi Dad, it’s me, your little girl.
I am now a parent myself. I now have my own little kid running around, missing his father.
They’ve always said I am just like my dad, but my kid isn’t fatherless because of me. And you know, it’s funny that he looks more like you than I do.
So when he does a new little trick he learned in daycare, my heart tightens up not just because you’re not there to see it, but also because that little side smirk he does looks just like the one I used to see on your face when I learned something new.
I have made my peace with not having you around, and I’ve accepted I will never have the type of relationship with my father that you see in the movies.
But it’s been over two years, and I am still struggling to wrap my head around the fact that my fatherless child, is being raised by a fatherless mother.
I only have faint memories of moments spent together, and most of them come to me riding a wave of anxiety, but at some point in time, I thought I had you. I thought you were here to stay, and I imagined a future where you’d be chasing my little boy in Central Park on a warm day in May. Weekend getaways at Grandma and Grandpa’s place, when you’d give him all the snacks I wouldn’t let him have at home, just because “Don’t tell your mom.”
But you left again . . . and for good.
Exactly a month after you walked out without even looking back at me, while I swallowed my tears and held my mom’s hand, I gave birth to your first grandchild. I thought you’d be interested, maybe at least curious to see what he looks like. Instead, you texted me a rose emoji and went about your day.
Despite the little girl in me trying her very best to act and think like an adult, on the inside, I have been screaming and yelling and dropping to my knees wondering why I was never worth the effort. Never worth the text, the random call to see if I’m even alive.
But that little girl you abandoned and threw to the wolves became fierce when you tried to do the same to her pup.
So I chose to break my heart to bits and pieces, time and time again, to build and rebuild that wall to perfection.
My kid doesn’t have a father, but he has a father figure. And most days he calls me “babe” because that’s what he hears him call me all the time, so he thinks it might just be my name.
You see, kids need a happy mom, and they need to see a good man loving their mom the right way.
And that’s how I know I was never worth much to you.
You once told me you only ever returned because of me, but you didn’t care enough to stick around and also didn’t care enough to let us go. You held on just enough to make sure somebody else couldn’t step in and be the father I needed.
Now this wall I have been building has all the pain and memories and wishes in vain stuck in concrete on the side that is facing you. My and my child’s side are filled with strength, hope, safety, dreams, happiness, and love.
I grew up being labeled with “daddy issues,” but that’s not my baggage to carry.
So you can stick to your side of the gray, tear-filled wall infused with all the pain of your little girl.
I will raise my fatherless kid on my journey to healing everything you broke, and as I pick up my pieces along the way, I will make sure my son stays intact, by putting him first.
The way I would’ve wanted you to do it.