One of the greatest joys of being a father to a little girl is the amazing amount of love that you can see her showing you. People always comment on how overwhelmed they are with love for their children. And that is certainly true for me. I will never be able to show or tell her how much love I have for her. I myself can not even comprehend it and am overwhelmed by the feeling. All I can do is show her the love then I can manage to convey, and although that is a lot it will never come close to meeting the full amount.
But I don’t often hear about parents speaking about the love they see returned to them. There is no better feeling in the entire world when she walks up to me out of the blue and wants to give me a hug. Not just any hug either, but the one where it feels like she is trying to squeeze you as hard as she possibly can to convey just how much she loves you. Or simply when she comes up to me and says “Guess what Dad?” When I ask what she simply says “I love you Dad!” It instantly makes everything else that is going on melt away.
Tonight at our church Christmas party she was decorating a paper bag to put her crafts in. I was standing there watching. She had been drawing and decorating every side of the bag, using different colors, telling me she was going to color the whole bag. I was standing there quietly, impatiently, hoping she would say she was done ready to move on to the other crafts. Then she draws a heart and two people on each side of the heart. She labels one person her, then writes Dad above the person. When I asked her what she was doing she said we were holding a heart together. Guess that was a reminder that I should take the time to enjoy every moment, even when it seems like those moments are not exactly the most exciting moments.
Other people who see us interact can see the love she shows for me as well. My wife and I work opposite shifts at the same job. We often exchange her in the parking lot at work or meet in the break room for dinner together in between shifts. People are always commenting on how lucky each of us are but one particular comment the other day was more special then the others. An older gentleman had said to me that he had been walking out to his car the previous day. As he walked by my wife and daughter sitting in the car my daughter saw me walking out the door. He said she got so excited she couldn’t control her excitement. He couldn’t resist smiling and thinking how lucky we both were. He said it was awesome to see a daughter so excited and obviously filled with love for her daddy. I agree.
I only hope that the close relationship continues to grow and stay strong as she gets older. It’s easy to have a close relationship at 4 years old. But as she grows and looks to gain more independence, I truly hope she never looks to gain that independence from the close relationship we have. I find it so sad that some children feel they don’t have a close relationship through their life with their parents. I understand growing pains occur, and the role of parent and child has its ups and downs as children grow older. But I truly hope we are able to continue that close relationship throughout our lives.