From the moment I laid my eyes on this beautiful girl, I was clearly, eternally wrapped around her finger. She entered this world and grabbed ahold of my heart with both hands. To this date, 16 years later, she hasn’t let go…not even for a minute. Being the father of a daughter was not something I was prepared for. Honestly, I have a few problems with some of you in my life that didn’t even give me the smallest of a heads up. But, seriously, I’m not sure anything would have prepared me for the realities of having a little, precious girl look up to me the way a daughter does.
There is this overwhelming and intense pressure that I think never really subsides. The pressure from the responsibility to protect this gift of a girl that God has brought into my life. I now understand that God has used that pressure to help grow, stretch, and change me for His, mine, and her good. Frankly speaking, I couldn’t handle being a dad to a daughter (or a son for that matter) without God’s gracious hand guiding me.
And…that he did. This relationship between me and my sweet daughter is something very special and deeply rooted at the center of my big man heart. I’ve truly never melted so quickly as when I see a hurt or sadness in my daughter’s eyes. Those times when she has been pushed to her ends, and isn’t sure how to interpret or respond to this life…those are the times God has used to strengthen our bond, and severely deepen my understanding of his love for me.
My daughter has always been a source of fun, excitement, and positive influence to all who know her. She has a sincere desire to work hard and do her best in most everything she tries. That hard-working discipline has actually rubbed off on the rest of the family here and there along the way. We each get real inspiration from her; even if we all don’t readily admit it. She also loves others just about as hard as she works on projects, and always seems to have room in her heart for another. Her smile is infectious, her laugh contagious, and her personality simply charming.
It has been such a treat to watch as that little, dark-haired bundle of joy has turned into the very beautiful lady I see before my eyes today. I’m so glad that she still enjoys hanging out with me…in public…where other people see us. She is my favorite 16 year old in the whole world, and I hope and pray that her next 16 years are even greater than the first.
To any guys out there with ideas: I take that God-given responsibility to protect her and help guard her heart incredibly serious. I know God might have a good one of you out there for her one day, but just remember that until that time, I am the man in her life. If you want to get to her, and try to win her heart, you have to get through me. 😉
She will always and forever be my Baby Girl Princess.