As I sit here trying to figure out how to make a very special Father’s day dinner for my husband, my mind suddenly drifts off into hazy memories and I start thinking of my dad. Well, at least I try very hard to bring just a little memory into existence. I try so hard that I actually begin to make some up…
…He took me to walks in the park in my little polka-dot dress and Suzie Q hat when I was 5. He told me amazing stories filled with adventure and wonder before going to bed each night. He took me to the zoo and the movies and the lake when I was 10. He took to me to mall parking lots to teach me how to drive, we danced the waltz at my Sweet 16, and he walked me down the aisle when I was 21.
In my fabricated memories, he never left when I was 2 years old, he was never a heroin addict, and I know exactly where he is at this very moment. He rescued me from wrinkled hands that touched me inappropriately at the tender age of 4. He never let anyone beat me or scar me and he taught me how to play chess as he promised at 13. He didn’t allow me to leave with my boyfriend that night when I was raped because he is always there protecting me. Even at the age of 29, I am daddy’s little girl. He knows and adores my children and my children are in love with their grandpa.
I shake off the fairy tale make believe story, as the lump in my throat grows tighter and the tears in my eyes fight hard to roll down my cheeks. I wish to say I never needed him but I did. I wonder if he ever thinks about me or my other siblings whom are all from different mothers. I wonder if my siblings missed him as much as I.
Yes, my mother stepped in to fill in those shoes as best as she could and did an amazing job. Yes, she met an awesome man who walked me on my big day and proudly calls me daughter. Yes, I have a wonderful husband who dances with me and calls me Princess and yes, I have a God who guides me and is my great Protector. But sometimes… just sometimes… on a day like today, I wish you could sit at my table and enjoy this special dinner. How I wish I could tell you that even though you were never here I love you and I missed and miss you more than you’ll ever know.