He is trying to hold back his tears not to show his weakness. But, he can’t. He is burning inside from holding back his pain. He is angry at her. He wants to shout at her, “You are wrong.” All these words were fogged up in his mouth. Can’t even say it. He loves her this much that he can’t even hurt her, can’t even rebuke her and can’t even stop her from hurting him.
In his thoughts,” She is wrong for disrespecting me. I’m her father. All I want her little love and understanding.”
Then she left. While her dad could hardly contain himself. He tried to vent out so at least to lessen the pain inside. He started telling their story from their happy moments together to that day when she left angry at her dad.
He warned me, “I’m sorry if I have to tell you this. You shouldn’t have to know. But, you see how she acts and talks to me in front of you.”
So I listen. I listened to his deepest thoughts hoping to get to his innermost feeling. At least, I could encourage him and help him to make things better between them.
He stood up and went inside the bedroom quietly. He picked the photo album of his daughter when she was five. While I was scanning, he told me all the details of the story behind each picture. He can still recall how good and obedient she was. I can only hear all appreciation from his mouth and of course every beautiful memory of every minute with her.
He deeply sighed. Trying to hold back his tears.
” She grew up so fast. Everything felt like just yesterday.”
“These are the evidence that I never been the least father to her. I took her everywhere and all the places you could imagine because I love her.” He utters.
Then in my mind, I learn that loving and raising your child are not enough. There must be more than just giving them everything. And teaching them to obey and respect don’t come as easy. It requires divine intervention. As they said, there’s no perfect recipe in becoming a perfect parent.
Money. Time. Effort. Everything her dad gave and did just to get her custody because her parents broke up when she was one. Wanting to be with her was always a struggle. Even for that very one day on her second birthday, she had only a few hours with her dad. Her dad took her to McDonald’s and begged other customers with children to join them in singing the birthday song. She was a little girl who couldn’t even understand the heart-breaking pain of a father just to spend every minute with his daughter. (This story made me cry)
It was hard for him really to balance work and fathering. But, he didn’t even care if he had to choose her more than his girlfriend; if he had to decline parties and gimmicks with friends over her because spending time with her is his true happiness. Happiness that he is not sure now if he can still feel and have from her. She really made him devastated. But, he has to overcome for his new family and for his health sake.
He knows inside of him he became a father to her. He was there guiding her during her entire teenage life. Also, he taught her to survive life by teaching her how to drive a car. When she hit another car during the practice, her dad didn’t mind paying all the damages. Instead, he trusted her to drive his car. Imagine how happy her dad was when she got her driving license. It’s his great achievement and a sense of success for a parent after teaching her to be tough and independent. He must be a proud parent when she got her college diploma. The hard work has paid well. She becomes a successful lady and she is earning well.
And when she decided to get married. Her father was still there for her. Bought her gifts —a new fridge and gave her cash for a new car and other wedding expenses.
Not only that, he came to visit her helping around the house like changing the bulb and fixing the fence. Yes. It is an odd job that her dad won’t mind working for her because he loves her. And, doing all these things give joy to a father like him. And so as she. She was so happy having her dad around. It is a mutual exchange of affection. She needs him.
She is hoping one day her dad would stay near her. It was the first time when she started to give back love. She hugged her dad tightly. She told him that she loved him. He was exaspirately happy.
She expected. She feared. She was broken when one day his promise became a mere fantasy.
Plans to live near her didn’t work out for a while when her dad’s wife (stepmom) got pregnant. But, he promised her to come back to settle near her. It was just he had to leave for now. They had to pack up and leave to his wife’s country the soonest as the plane allowed her to ride. Her dad thought this could be the best way for his family because in there his wife can get enough support from his in-laws.
She was down and out. Then, love turned to fear. Fear turned to hate. Then, hate turned to anger. Her anger turned to rebellion. Because of this, she dishonored her father.
She closed her heart and became numb. She never felt anything for him anymore.She never answered his call, private messages and even tried to contact him. Putting walls is the best defense mechanism.
One day, she had to face her dad once again. Her dad was hoping maybe things would turn fine when they see face to face. Obviously, he was so excited to meet her. He took her half-sister at least, so two would feel comfortable inside the car. But, she didn’t talk to him. She snubbed and gave an air kiss. She was too cold to her dad that even I noticed it.
One day in a very special lunch, she chose to accompany her half-brother to see his dad in the hospital instead of dining with him. So her dad was asking if she could stay with him because she had nothing to do with her brother’s dad. (I’m sure her dad will understand if she only approaches him with respect.)
‘She yelled,” Don’t start with me, dad. I have to accompany him because he is my brother. Anyway, if you wanna see me, you know where I live. You know where to find me.”
An ultimatum from a daughter to her dad who raised her and whom she owe for who she is now. I know it is hard to discipline an adult child because she won’t listen, she won’t understand and she is not willing to hear his explanation.
“I’m coming back for you and I will keep my promise to live near you.”
It’s over. She is angry.
So, her dad decided to toughen enough and distance from her. I don’t know if it is the best way, but I think it is the better way to cool things down between them.
As of this writing, I am still praying that it is not going to be too late to apologize and to mend broken hearts. This is because… honoring your parents always comes with a great blessing. Otherwise, it will always have a punishment from Above. I just like to ask a little prayer from you that may both hearts will heal the soonest. Also to those parents out there who are having struggles with their rebelled adult child ( who might be experiencing the same, I’m praying for you as well.) I, myself, don’t know how to discipline them. If you have suggestion, please leave in the comment below. And, I will let God do the impossible job— mending broken hearts and letting go of pains so forgiveness happens.