Believe it!

dad and AT

The other day my youngest child said something that I can’t get out of my mind.

I was putting her to bed, we were having our normal nightly conversation:  reviewing the school day, the schedule for the week, homework, the usual.  And then, she sort of quietly said, “Sometimes I look at you, and I just can’t believe you’re my father.”

I said, “What do you mean by that?  Do you mean that in a good way?”

I was hopeful she meant, I just CAN’T BE-LIEVE you’re my father!  I’m the luckiest girl in the world!!

She said, “Not really.”

This is when things because a bit uncomfortable.

“Do you mean it in a bad way?” I asked.

Like, I can’t believe YOU’RE my father because there are so many better choices out there.

No.  I didn’t mean it in a bad way.

I pressed, “Well, then exactly what DID you mean?”

Oh, I don’t know.  It’s hard to explain.  She stammered a bit.

My mind was zipping around like Tinkerbell:

I can’t believe you’re my FATHER – you don’t have the maturity to handle this job. You’re only qualified to be my brother.

I can’t believe you’re MY father – we have so little in common.  I had to have been adopted.

She tried to pacify me.  “Dad, just don’t worry about it.  I didn’t mean anything by it.  It’s hard to explain.”

I eventually dropped it and put her to bed.

Yesterday I told DJ about our conversation.  Her response?  “Yeah.  I sort of feel the same way.”

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21 Comments

  1. I’d loose sleep over such a statement. Can’t believe as in there is an alternative reality where you aren’t her dad?

    hmmm

    Reply
  2. Michelle

     /  April 22, 2015

    Don’t sweat it… your girls are very lucky. Someday they will be grown with children & look back and wonder how you were able to do it all. They don’t always tell us the good things that we want to hear when they are young… just keep that memo in your back pocket & in the future (when she has children) revisit that conversation. I bet you will hear the answer you wanted to the first time!!!!! Keep up the good work!

    Reply
    • Eeek… That is hard. I read recently that between the ages of 9-12 kids are trying to figure out who they are independently of their parents. I don’t know how old she is, but ya know, give yourself a break. Parenting is stinking hard. The fact that you take time to tuck them in speaks volumes.

      Reply
  3. Mom

     /  April 22, 2015

    It’s one of those moments when you step outside of yourself and look at life and see it from someone else’s perspective. It’s like an out-of-body experience.. It sometimes amazes you when you take it all in. It’s not good nor bad…it just is…a different perspective. Those girls are so connected to you that they can’t stay on the other side of the room from you.
    When you’re in a room with them they have to be sitting beside you or on you or teasing you. Only when you see the connection from the outside, like we do, can you see how strong the connection is. As adults, they will always call and always return to their Daddy base for that safe place where they know they are unconditionally loved.

    Reply
  4. Kim Balentine

     /  April 22, 2015

    Its because you are the COOLEST, ROCK SOLID dad ever!!!!!!!

    Reply
  5. David

     /  April 22, 2015

    Forget about it. Thinking about stuff like that will drive you nuts. I can’t believe you have all those pretty daughters.

    Reply
  6. who knows the mind of a teenager anyway? They are so insure of themselves 99% of the time.

    Reply
  7. Mel Ham

     /  April 22, 2015

    I think it’s like a veil that is being lifted..it happens…sooner for girls than boys. You start looking at who you are…where you came from….as startling to us as parents when we see innocence lost…they see us differently too. I see behaviors and listen to Cam. I see things that are so innate. It’s in his DNA. Responding to things just like i would when he hasn’t witnessed it…with peers, expectations etc. It may also be sad as it is Lisa not being there during this transition too. You start looking at your hands, your mom’s, things ways that she does things. Everyone so far is correct that you can’t worry about it…but there are times that it stops you in your tracks and you try to figure out what they are thinking ,processing…almost like trying to analyze a dream. It’s the most naturally complicated thing to raise children.

    Reply
  8. One day, she’s going to say that, and mean it in an entirely different way. Probably when you’re giving her away at her wedding. Hold fast, you’re doing an amazing job. Don’t ever doubt that.

    Reply
  9. Kathy S

     /  April 22, 2015

    I think your mom is right on! I too think it is a strong connection that your daughter is feeling and can’t figure it out herself, let alone explain it to you.

    Reply
  10. lynnjoan

     /  April 22, 2015

    From some one who doesn’t know you or your family AT ALL, it seems to me that You are doing an awesome job….having said that…it is the hardest thing being a parent, especially a single parent…and a Dad of daughters? YOU deserve the Purple Heart, the Nobel Peace Prize and a Gold Star! Why do kids ever say anything? Who knows…. 🙂 I totally agree with your Mom (and all the others) on this one…..

    Reply
  11. Aunt Susan

     /  April 22, 2015

    You worry way too much. go back and read what your mom said again, she is very wise.
    you and the girls have such an awesome relationship, that many of us would love to have. I think she meant it all in such a good way. Enjoy the really good relationships you have with each of them, cherish all of those times.

    see ya in a few weeks for a few hours!!!

    Reply
  12. From the moment our children are born, we suffer. It is the price we pay for the hardest job on Earth! Know that they love you unconditionally and will say a million more weird, hurtful, strange, loving, crazy things for years to come! It comes with the job! Best of luck to you – you seem like a really good dad! :o) ~MommyWarrior (mom of 2;step-mom of 3)

    Reply
  13. love the post, and all of the comments are so precious and uplifting – but all I can do is sit here and giggle. Like a lot of giggles!!!

    Reply
  14. i’m in agreement with your mom and her viewpoint is so sweet. I also want to add in a very crucial point. females. We females. are odd. We have the oddest perspectives sometimes and then…. the next day it can be quite different especially as a teen. I know Kaegan thinks why the heck is my mom my mom, but I thought and think that about my mom and dad too. You are a great dad, you need to own it. 🙂

    Reply
  15. You’re doing an awesome job! Being a parent is the most difficult job of the world but most rewarding as well. And I fully agree with your mom as well. I think she’s spot on!

    Reply

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