A girl’s first true love is her father. —Marisol Santiago
She’s strong. She’s feisty, full of opinions and fire. She will seem bulletproof, but something lies beneath the surface of her tough exterior - a tiny inkling that causes trust issues at the most inconvenient of times. People are drawn to her, but she struggles with seeing herself as the perfection that she is. She’s loved deeply, she’s been loved all the way, but no matter how much love she has, that insecurity is still alive and well, comfortable in its home in her bones.
Your daughter needs you. You might not know that she does because she’s so strong, but don’t be fooled, she needs you as much as she’s needed you when she could barely reach your waist, when you told her she was beautiful in her yellow dress on her first day of school.
She doesn’t want your money or the things you can buy her, she wants your time. She wants your attention. She wants you to love her when she messes up. When she’s struggling and she feels like the world is against her she wants an “I love you” text. This is the good stuff, the moments of smaller magic that add up to be everything. These are the moments that change her, that make her believe in herself, in relationships, and in the world again.
She doesn't want to be the one you check on once in a while because you feel guilty if you don’t. She wants to know that calling her, writing to her, protecting her is a reflex that just feels second nature because you would never let anything happen to her. She wants you to be her best friend. She wants you to be over-protective at times, because you are her father and you are the only man that she needs to be over-protective. You are the only man that can show her that relationships are worth it. That no matter how much you may drive each other crazy, it’s worth it; that she is worth it, that people don’t leave when things get hard.
She wants to be the one you take a few extra minutes to make things special for. She wants you to tell her when she looks beautiful because trust me when I say that your opinion is the most important to her; even if she doesn’t show it at times. She wants to get a letter from you, to be surprised that you remembered something that she didn’t, to hear the words “I’m so proud of you.”
Surprise her with a game night, so you can finally see who’s actually better at Poker. Pick a movie that you love, a classic you want to introduce her to, and set up a movie night around it. Tell her stories from your past; the people you met, the moments that changed you, the first love that stayed with you. Tell her stories about when you were young and pursuing your dreams. She wants to be the person you challenge – to change, to grow, to expand in ways that wouldn’t have ever occurred to her. You are the only man she ever truly needed and your unconditional love is like the water that makes her bloom.
Like a precious fragrant flower that you brought proudly into the world, you can never leave her to wither; It’s your job to never stop nurturing her.
And her love for you is the purest, most dearest thing you will ever have in this life, too. No matter how mad she is at you, no matter what she says, your daughter worships you. She needs you. She will never be done needing you. You may not always understand her, but love her anyway, and love her all the way. Never let any circumstance get in the way of putting her first.