|Photo from Google Images|
(a letter to Will, my biological father)
It's been nearly 12 years since you last spoke to me; 16 since you last saw me.
Do you ever wonder how I'm doing?
Do you ever wonder who I look like – you or Mom?
I've decided to stay away from the dating game, and have devoted my life to that of physical + emotional purity for almost 12 years. I've made the decision to stay away from drugs + alcohol.
Would you be proud of me?
I got my learner's permit at 15 and my license at 18.
Would you have taught me how to drive, or Mom?
Would you be concerned for my safety out on the road?
I gave my life to Christ at 9 and rededicated my life to Him when I was 17! I don't regret either of these decisions.
Have you given your life to Christ?
Would you have been the one praying with me?
In school, I really enjoyed Algebra + spelling.
Did you enjoy these subjects too?
June 7, 2014 I graduated high school as our family's very first home-school graduate. I don't want to go to college, but would rather allow God to direct my steps.
Would you have allowed Mom to home-school me?
Would my decision of not going to college bother you?
I've always felt drawn to Africa, in fact God has called me to go in the near future.
Did you ever think “God's going to do great things in her life”?
I've been playing the piano for 13 years. Mom tells me that your sister Sabrina played the piano as well.
Did you ever think I would inherit that gift?
I wear glasses all the time – just like your bother Harry.
Did it ever dawn on you that I too would wear glasses?
I no longer have long blond hair, but now have long brown hair. Mom says that as I get older, I have your color hair more and more. She also tells me that I have your beautiful blue eyes.
Would this make you proud?
I've always held extra weight, which Mom says runs in both families. I'm really trying to lose weight and be healthier.
Would you tell me I'm beautiful the way I am?
When I was born, you wanted my name to be “Alisha”.
Did you ever think that I would love the name YOU chose?
Did you ever think that the little girl you held in your arms would cherish the fact that her biological father picked her first name?
I never went out for that promised birthday lunch/dinner with you.
Do you ever regret “forgetting” that promise, but instead moving away with your new family and dog?
When I was six, you signed off parental rights for another man to take your place.
Didn't that break your heart?
Have you ever wondered if he raised me “right”?
I've only spoken to you one time on the phone.
Do you regret never calling me again?
You left over the road when I was three weeks old. Not putting in much effort to be the father (or dad) I needed. You didn't really care about the responsibility of being a father, you just wanted the title.
It use to break my heart to know that you didn't love me enough to [at least] try to be my dad. Perhaps I should be mad because you not only made me suffer, but you made Mom suffer too.
But it doesn't break my heart anymore, because God blessed me abundantly. He took care of everything and turned it around for the good.
I was blessed with an amazing, Godly man to raise me. Yes, I have the best dad in the world! Because of your decisions, I have been blessed to have Daniel raise me for the past 16 years. He's my hero, and I love him so much. No - Daniel's not perfect. But... he tries – and that's all that matters to me – the effort he puts forth.
And for the record… I'm not mad about the heartache you caused Mom either. Because, in Daniel, God blessed Mom with an amazing husband, who treats her with the respect and compassion any woman deserves.
So - even though you never cared about or tried being my dad, the very few times that you were around meant/still means the world to me and I hold on to those memories, still. The smallest of things like:
** reading to me before bed
** picking me up from preschool
** teaching me how to yo-yo (I still can't to this day figure it out)
** correcting me after I stuck my tongue out at you
** the time you called me “baby girl” and said “I love you”
Will, now that I'm older, I finally realize that I can't stay mad at you forever – nor can I hold a grudge against you forever; that's just emotionally draining + goes against the Bible. What good is life if I'm going to live it emotionally drained!?
Will, on this day I make the choice to forgive you, completely.
I forgive you for walking out. I forgive you for signing-off your parental rights. I forgive you for forgetting that birthday lunch. I forgive you for never calling me back.
I love you, Will. What you have done in the past won't change that. I want you to know - that I don't love you like I love Mom and Daddy. I love you like a brother. That's what you are – a brother in Christ. I no longer think of you as my father nor do I consider you my dad. You didn't want that responsibility (which is fine).
Daniel has been not only a great father, but a wonderful Daddy. When he “bought the farm...” (as you so eloquently put it), he made me his girl. And I made him my Daddy. Like I've said before, he's by no means perfect. But being a dad doesn't mean you have to be perfect! All a child cares about is Daddy being there for them, loving them, raising them to be in the likeness of Christ – taking responsibility. And really that's all Daniel does.
That's all I have to say … for now. I do, however, have one last question:
I'm always thinking about you.
Do you think of me?