Saturday, December 12, 2009

Daddy's girl

Yesterday, I drove my husband to work because I was going to have our breaks repaired. They hadn't been sounding very good, and with winter in full force, it seemed that we needed to shell out the bucks to have them fixed. It was estimated that it would cost us about $60.

So, I dropped off the car, and decided to walk around for about 2 hours while the brakes were fixed. I opted to take a long walk to a nursery that I knew would have some special ornaments for the tree that we were planning to get this weekend. It was further than I might have chosen to walk, but...I was killing time.

It was a pretty warm day...about 20 degrees. Ferdinand and I happily walked along. We finally arrived at the nursery, and mulled about in the parking lot because it hadn't opened yet. We were about 10 minutes too early.

Finally they opened their gates, and we went inside to enjoy the winter wonderland of trees filled with wonderful ornaments....all kinds...all colors...

We walked around slowly. Ferdinand was mellow after our long walk, and didn't seem to mind that I would stop and stand for several minutes as I admired the ornaments, taking note of each tree...that way, when I went around a second time, I would just pick the ones I liked best. I wanted to get an ornament for each child...including Simon and Alexander.

There were so many to choose from. I waited for them to speak to reveal the perfect ones....

Finally, I was ready. I started to collect the ones that really seemed to embody the spirit of each child. They were perfect.

And then, I heard my cell phone ringing. It had been two hours...and the owner of the auto clinic, Nick, was calling.

He didn't mince any words. The mechanic had started looking at the breaks. They weren't just bad. They were ruined. ruined. It would easily cost $800 or more to repair them, and it would take longer than a day to do it. It would take at least a week to get the parts.

I asked if I could make payments, and his reply? "No ma'am...I'm really sorry...but, we just don't do that."

"'s almost Christmas...." was my lame answer.

yeah. Almost Christmas. Five children to buy gifts for. One car. no brakes.

I told him I'd head back to the store...that it would take me about an hour.

"ma'am....I can not let you drive this rig home....the brakes are gone. If the last one gives out, and it's about to do that, you won't be able to stop. You'll crash. I can't let you drive home."

I hung up the phone. I put all the ornaments I'd picked so lovingly and carefully back on the trees. I left the store.

and I started to sob.

and sob.

I knelt down and buried my head in Ferdinand's shaggy mane of hair and just started to scream. He licked my hair gently. It was the only part of me he could reach.

I knew I must look crazy to the passing cars.

I knew it wasn't "o.k." to just have a melt down in public.

But...I couldn't help it.

I tried to pull myself together. Pulled my cell phone out. And called my father.

Now, this is a good place to explain that I don't call my father for help because He's not one to give it. I've known that my entire life....his motto was always "why does your need have a claim on my wallet."...I first heard that at age 6.

But there I was, calling him. More for mechanic advise than anything else...maybe he would know of a trick that would buy me time until we got our tax return. maybe.

I expected fully to be told he couldn't help. wouldn't help. That it was too bad that my life was so hard. fault.


he surprised me.

"I have a credit card we can put the costs on...don't worry sweetheart. It all comes from the same's going to be o.k."

a mixture of guilt, and elation came over me.

Here was a man I'd understood all my life wouldn't help me...helping me.

Here was a man that always made me feel that my hard times were simply karmic payback making me feel like his little girl.

Here was my dad...being my dad.

calling me sweetheart....and MEANING it.

and I was grateful. and confused.

and a little angry. and a whole lot....sad.

Where was he for the past 35 years? Where was that tender voice all of that time?

and why....why was it here now? how did he find it?

how did I deserve it?

How could I ever repay him?

Not just in money...but....ever...on a psychic level? How can I repay him for the hand that picked me back up off the ground when I was feeling that inner scream of too much piled on top of me... "NO! I can't take ANYMORE hardship! I just CAN'T! I am DROWNING!!!!"

and daddy was there; reaching down with a warm hand and a gentle smile... after a life time of wanting him...a life time of needing his love.

I spent today walking around with my husband...using our feet and the bus to get our errands done. We know our car is getting fixed...and Christmas won't be canceled...because, all of a sudden, for some wonderful reason...

I have a daddy.


  1. "I love you baby," love, Ty (logged in as you...)

  2. "yeah, you rock baby, you know it's true..." love, Ty

  3. I am so sorry that you are having such a tough time financially on top of grieving, but am so happy that your father chose this moment, a moment you really REALLY needed his love and support, to step up for you in a big way. Thinking of you friend, and sending you hugs and prayers that things get easier, and the holiday ahead is a beautiful one for your whole family, and one where you feel your sweet Simon and Alexander with you. I will be remembering them...

  4. What a lovely time for your father to help you. I'm thinking of you, too, and sending you prayers. We're very tight this year as well (but counting our blessings we got into a house of our own instead of renting). I so totally relate to your feeling of being overwhelmed. They say money can't buy happiness but I keep joking with my husband that it could greatly alleviate some stress for us.... Glad you have a wonderful life partner and have had this moment with your father. xo

  5. This is really inspiring. I mean, it makes me want to go up to my own dad and give him a big hug for all he's done for me, and continues to do as I move forward in my life. Thanks for sharing this really cool moment.


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