|My beautiful mother walking me down the aisle|
"Where is your dad?"
I've heard this question from school friends, baby-sitters, teachers, and co-workers. No matter how many times I have had to answer the question in nearly two decades, the answer is still painful for myself and the inquirer.
"He left when my Mom was pregnant with me...but they were married."
I didn't want people to think I was the product of a one-night stand, and I didn't want people to think badly of my mother. But, the marriage bit didn't make the conversation any less awkward. The dull ache in my heart would grow more profound when people would inquire about the whereabouts of my dad. Sometimes, I would wish there was a simpler answer. But, every time I tried to simplify things the conversation would become even messier. (To clarify, I know who my father is, and I know where he lives. However, we do not have a relationship).
Planning a wedding without a father is a painful thing. It was obvious while I was planning the wedding that my mother would walk me down the aisle. My mother would say a speech at dinner. My mother's heart would ache at letting her baby girl go. I knew that it was the right thing to invite my father. But, what would my father's role be in the day?
Our wedding day was beautiful, and on May 7th I wasn't too concerned with my dad. I saw him, I spoke a few words to him, but that was about it. I was spending the rest of my life with my husband, and I barely even felt the dull ache on our day.
A few nights ago I was laying next to my sleeping husband, but I couldn't sleep. The dull ache was pounding in my chest, and tears were streaming down my cheeks. Here I am, happily married, loved by my precious mother, and complete in Christ. Instead, I was dwelling on my childhood abandonment. My wonderful husband woke up and held me, and said all the right words. But, where does that leave me, a nearly 22-year-old woman who still aches for the father she never had?
I only have one answer: Turn to my Heavenly Father.
My Almighty Father, who clothed me, fed me, and loved me. My Father, who comforted me when I mourned the failures of my earthly father. My loving and caring Daddy, who brought joy into my childhood, and taught me the love of Jesus at an early age. My forgiving Father, who protected his daughter when she was led down the road of destruction, and welcomed her home with open arms when she returned to Him.
My Father God, who has given me hope. I had to wait 19-years to meet an honest and decent man, but when I did, he was like a shining prince, sweeping me off of my feet. My Daniel, who will be a loving and caring father to our children. What a blessing! The joys that I will experience when I see our sons and daughters with their daddy.
I have hope in my Daddy too, who will one day hold and comfort me when I finally get to be in His arms.