Sunday, July 09, 2006

Daughters & Daddys

I love my daughters.

I have two and I love them both equally and whole souled. This is a recent picture of Rachel when she got her face painted at Disney World.

Melody Larkin is a wonderful, brilliant and amazing young woman. Rachel Aubrey is fiesty and brash and blazing. Melody is exactly like me and yet so different my eyes spin just thinking about it. It has come to be my absolute belief that the greatest source of joy and of pain for any man’s heart is inflicted not by his lover . . . it is from his

In my heart of hearts, it is hard to "allow" them to grow up. I want Melody to be young still, needing me and worshiping the ground I walk on. The greatest boost to my self-esteem and ego that I have ever experienced is the wide-eyed look of shear joy in my daughter’s eyes when she would see me. I miss it ... I miss the "little-girl" her.

Yet I am in awe and totally bewildered of the young, independent woman she has become. She draws me and confuses me. Nothingcan make me feel relaxed or less protective of her, even though I’m the very last person on this planet she wants to have tell her what to do. I guess it is a right of passage as young girls grows up: They discard the very things they needed when they were little to prove to themselves they are not little anymore.

And here is the brutal attack on my ego:

She’s doing a
great job without me.
And here I hoped and prayed that I would be eternally indispensable. How dare she be so complete in her life without her dad.

Probably the most difficult adjustment I had to make in my viewpoint toward Melody was her first boyfriend. What a wanker. I wanted to ring the little jerk’s neck but, no, you smile and take them out for hamburgers instead. I think a father’s greatest fear is that another man will view his daughter the same way we know all boys actually think about girls.

my daughter you don’t. Not my precious, innocent angel that I would carry in one arm and cuddle up to on the couch and call “Monkey” because she would stuff a whole banana in her mouth all at once and who just finished high school and got through her third car wreck and keeps asking me for money all the time.

She is exempt from guys like him.

So what can I say about my little girls? You are both the very best of everything I wish I was and still yearn to be. You are everything I have worked for and lost and regained. You are the forgiveness and redemption of every mistake I’ve made and the blessing of everything wonderful I could ever ask for. My life is nothing without you in it. And I would give my life and my heart for you in an instant with absolutely no hesitation. And I struggle to grow with you and re-learn about you both. You are changing so fast and, in the lament of the little girls you used to be, I celebrate with great pride the young women you have become.

There is no greater hole in my heart, no brighter fire in my spirit, no more precious gem in my life than for you, my beautiful daughters.

folksinger - tree hugger - daddy