Dear Daddy… a message from your newborn
For now, I need your deep rolling voice and strong gentle hands. I need your warm skin and scratchy kisses, your loving smile and clumsy laughter. I need you to look after tired, exhausted mummy, and to be patient with us through the long days and longer nights. To make cups of tea, and do the laundry. To comfort me in the long dark nights, rocking me gently, as you walk me up and down the dark hall.
It feels like forever but it passes quickly, you’ll just have to trust me on that.
For soon, you’ll be back at work. Earning money to help provide food and shelter for mummy and I. You’ll go to work at 8am, sometimes after already being awake with me for hours. You’ll come home, exhausted and grumpy, to a partner who all too often has nothing left to give. This is when I will need you most.
I will need you to be the rock in the storm. To cuddle me in your gentle, strong arms, while you face down mummy’s desperate cries with tender words and firm hugs. You won’t always get it right, and sometimes you’ll get it very wrong, but Daddy, I promise I’ll love you all the same. In those moments, I’ll need you more than anything, to forgive yourself and mummy quickly. To warm the room with your laughter, and show me that sometimes, it’s ok to be wrong.
One day, I’ll be big. A princess, a ballerina, an explorer, a dragon or a powerful witch. I’ll ask you to play the same game, over and over, and I need you to play with me Daddy. To put your phone away, leave your stresses behind, and just play. And through this, Daddy, you’re teaching me of my self-worth.
As I grow older, you might feel like you understand me less, but I’ll need you more. I’ll need you to take my hand and guide me up those first few branches, then let go and watch me climb. I’ll need your calm confident voice that says “you can do it”. I’ll be afraid at first, but I’ll push myself forward, because I’ll know, as I’ve seen all my life, that if I fall, you’ll be there to catch me.
Then, in a long, long while, I will decide to go out on my own. You might think it’s too soon, and you’ll probably be right, but at that time I’ll need you to trust in the girl you raised so well, and believe in me the way I believe in myself… thanks to you.
But for right now, Daddy – your deep rolling voice and strong gentle hands are enough.