Will You, Daddy?

I've seen a change in my 8 year old daughter over the summer (she will soon be 9). I can sense a maturing of her personality as well as her physically looking less like a little girl.  I understand that she must grow up and yet, I dread that it is happening so quickly.  Almost 9 years old?  It seems like only yesterday that she was crawling around my home playing hide and seek with me. Where has the time gone?

I also notice that she treats me a *little differently compared to last year.  She is a little more independent and a little less likely to seek my attention since she has other things to occupy her time such as dancing, cheering and (groan) even little boys.

I am able to put these changes in perspective since I have 2 older daughters and I've been through this stage before.  But, still, it is on my mind and I am not happy about (again) learning to adjust to a daughter who once was all about daddy, but is becoming less-so by the day.  It's hard for me, to be honest because, quite possibly she will be my last child.  So this is it for me as far as I know.  I want it to last a little longer.

Imagine my delight as I was walking her to her class recently.  I had gotten her up late for school and so we were--well, late for school.  We arrived and I parked my car so I could take her to the office and sign her in.  As I finished filling out the tardy form, I was prepared to send her to class by herself, but she asked me to walk her to her class instead.  It was sweet of her to ask me, I thought, and so I walked her without hesitation.  

Her class is not in the main building.  We had to walk all the way around the cafeteria, through the rear parking area and to a portable class room near the far edge of school property.  It was a pretty good stroll and took us several minutes to get back there.  We were able to talk a little along the way and I enjoyed the extra few minutes I had with her. As we approached the door way to her portable classroom, I reached out and handed her the tardy slip.

"Here's your pass, honey.  Have a good day."  

I put my arm around her shoulder and hugged her.  She is not yet at the "don't hug me" stage, so it wasn't surprising that she allowed me to hug her as a few other late students passed by. But I was a little surprised at a request she made of me before going in to class.

"I wish you could walk me to class everyday.  Will you daddy?"

My heart just melted right there where I stood.  I couldn't believe she was asking me. I didn't wait long to answer her. 

"Are you kidding me?  I would love to!  Now get to class before you get in trouble. And don't tell your teacher that daddy overslept.  Tell her-- that there was a tornado or something."  I grinned at her.

"Oh daddy!"  (Smiles)  She took her back-pack off of my shoulder and put it around her arms.  "Bye daddy."  We exchanged "i love you", and off she went to class.

As I walked back to my car, across the parking lot, under the oak tree with the large hanging branches, around the cafeteria where the smell of fresh baked bread wafted through the open doors, a smile came across my face.  She was still my little girl after all, even if just for a little while longer. I can't explain just how happy that makes me feel. :)

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11 Responses Sep 10, 2012

Sweet :)

This is lovely, thanks for sharing,

My daughter is the same age,and I can relate to your story,every baby step of the way,and as you walked her to her class,I sensed I had been here before,and your story,the way you describe the exchange between father and daughter,it just hit home...and really hard...like a tiny fist straight to the heart,and I wasn't expecting to find this story here this morning,but I'm glad I did,because it reminded me to go hug my "little girl",before she isn't anymore.Thank you for sharing.

Absolutely beautiful story, and recollection of your daughter and the memories. I am a mommy of 2 little girls, only 3 and 4 years old. I play both roles in my home, due to the job my husband has. He is not around. He is a good husband and a great father in the ways that he does what he does to provide a stable home, income wise. I do hope that my girls see that when they do get older. My girls, because so close in age, go through all of the maturing processes at the same time. This summer both of them, became a lot more independent. My 4 year old Chrissy was not sitting in the corner or up against my legs biting her nails in her shy away stage. Chrissy is the baby of my 2, more shy and reserved. Francesca, my 3 year old, I have these awesome videos of her dancing to music (I'm Sexy & I Know It) like crazy in the sprinklers at the playground near my home, she just doesn't have a care in the world. Frankie is my tom boy, and more outgoing one.
Now school is back in session, summer has come to an end, cold has set in, both my girls for the 1st time ever have finally warmed up to daddy. They love when he is home and they cherish him as he does them in the little amounts of time he gets to spend with them. They now cry when he starts his work week, because sometimes he will not be home for 3 days at a time, and sometimes he works double overtime on one of his days off, for that extra money
I only hope and wish that both my girls see daddy as doing all he could for us, working so hard to keep me as a stay at home mom for them, have food in our home, not have a monetary need, etc... I hope they love and admire him for the sacrifices he has made to make sure we had a family, instead of the way a lot of kids look at it now. most situations now, the kids look at the daddy as, well simply put a part time father, because he is never there.
You are a great daddy, and every girl, child, and woman needs their "DADDY". I grew up with out one, because he left when I was an infant. Now in the later years of my life, that I do know him, he would have been much better had he have stayed away. To raise a girl, is much more different, much more difficult then to raise a boy. I use to pray to the angels as a little girl asking them to bring me to my daddy.
You are a lucky man, a wonderful daddy, and will eventually be a best friend to all of your 3 daughters.
Hugs to you!!!

Butterfly Kisses(lightly blinking eyelashes on daddy's cheek)
is one of the most tender
sweet depictions
of a lilgirl
and her daddy's
love and bittersweet
moments realizing
she has grown up...
cry everytime i hear it...
your daughter is so blessed
to have you
joyinthejourney, clg

Long days, short years.

All is not done when they grow...my "baby" is 34 a busy mother of two and once in a while....she will find the time to give me a big hug and "thank you Dad"....and it still melts my heart. You will always be her Daddy...that is as it should be....

That is a really kind thing to say...

Treasure every moment my friend. Life is too short...it is smart of you to realize how important you as a father are to your daughters.

i know that she is the sunshine in your life. And you are an amazing dad. We all know the day will come when she wants dropped off around the corner. But until then cherish those little moments. And know that when she gets older there will be some of those again. Smiles

wise as always

we dread that day too,my guy is the apple of her eye!

yes you would be right

very happy..it makes you feel..you are her daddy..no matter what..and would love you to take her to class room..and feel good..to show you off..as you hug her..my daddy...:))) she must be thinking..how caring and warm..took extra steps to be with me..awesome....both are feeling connected...may you always find happiness and smiles in the company of each other...always.