Sunday, October 14, 2007

Oh to be a Daddy's Girl again...

There's nothing like the love between a dad and his daughter.

Rocking in a big blue chair in our living room is my earliest memory of me and my dad. I couldn't have been more than 2 or 3 years old. As we rocked night after night, I learned to trust him. My safety and security rested in his hands. I found comfort in his arms. And before long, I looked forward to our time together every evening.

I know a lot of women who don't have relationships with their fathers. And I know a lot of young girls who are growing up without their daddies. I know men who are neglecting their responsibility to their daughters and I know men who are fighting to make a connection with their little girls. There are some who would say that society makes too much of the daddy/daughter relationship. But I disagree completely.

Dads are supposed to teach us to trust. They are supposed to teach us to feel safe and secure with people who care for us and treat us well. It's our fathers who teach us how to relate to men and what to expect from them.

There was a stretch of time in my life when I didn't make any good decisions, especially with regard to men. My family took it very hard. They felt it was a poor reflection on them. During that time, I ruined my relationship with my dad. Our falling out was not the result of a loud argument or angry words. It was a gradual process in which he stopped having conversations with me. When I called on the phone, he'd pass it quickly to my mom so he didn't have to talk. I would ask him to go to a game with me and he would decline. And so it was... I was no longer daddy's girl.

In the years since then, I have taken responsibility for my past and worked very hard to pull myself up and rebuild my life. And I think my dad has seen that. And we're talking again. And it's nice.

I think they key is to never stop trying. Dads should persistently love their little girls, without fail, without end, unconditionally. And daughters should accept nothing less than that from life and in love. And when we fail, we have to do whatever it takes to get back to the place of safety and security and comfort. A place where we can just be daddy's girl again... Until we can get it right on our own.

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