the mr. and i created an email account for lil’ bug the week we found out we were pregnant. often we send her thoughts and promises, but sometimes just funny stories from pregnancy, or things we want to be sure that she knows about her parents. so on father’s day, i just had to share this note from the mr. because the bond between fathers + daughters is a complicated and beautifully special one:
hey sweet girl,
i understand the importance of not focusing on how cute, nice or pretty you are, not that you aren’t those things, but because you are so much more than those things, and you can be anything you want. but, i had to at least say it this time, because this is the first email i’m writing you where i have known you are a girl…and i’m so excited.
in a way I think i’ve always known that you’ve been a girl, or i’ve at least expected that you would be a girl. your mother says that i’m going to be a great dad for a girl. not that i wouldn’t be a great dad for a boy, but that girls need good dads.
i think i understand what she means, but to make sure that you and i are on the same page, i’m going to write what i think that means to me.
this list is in no particular order:
i promise to be there to pick you up when you fall…or at least when you will let me.
i promise to hold you when you are hurting, and not ask who i need to go hurt…until you ask me to.
i promise to support you and help you grow in whatever your heart desires…even if i don’t understand it.
i promise to show you what real love, care, and support look like, by loving your mother.
i promise to be a real person with real emotions, a lot of emotions, both good and bad…sorry in advance for the bad ones.
(as a side note, i’m an extremely emotional guy, like commercials can bring me to tears emotional. when i found out that you were a girl my heart exploded in the doctors office…so did my tear ducts. then seeing you on the sonogram was life changing. you are amazing.)
i promise to share my hobbies and interests with you, not just the ones that are “appropriate for little girls”.
i promise to listen when you need someone to talk to, and i mean really listen, not just listen so that i can then talk.
i promise to talk when you need me to, give advice, tell stories, or just tell you i love.
i promise to treat you like the unique and truly amazing gift that you are.
i promise to not spoil you and make you think that you are better than anyone else.
i promise to love you like you need, not always like you want.
i hope this list doesn’t sound trite. it’s all from the heart my beautiful, smart, strong, creative daughter.
i love you already and always will,
dad, daddy, pop…whatever you want to call me is fine with me.