When she is a baby, her eyes will search for your face. Her ears will listen to your voice and everything inside her will need to answer only one question, “Daddy, are you here?” If you are there her body will grow better. Her IQ will start to rise, her development will track where it is supposed to, but more important, she will realize life is good because you love her. You are her introduction to love; you are love itself.
When she goes to kindergarten, she will think about you and she might even talk about you. If another classmate makes a hurtful remark, your daughter will boast to the bully that he’d better be careful because you, her hero, will come over to his house and beat him up. To her, you can do anything, and most especially, you can protect her.
In elementary school, her challenges and her world expand, but her question for you will be the same: “Daddy are you still there for me?” When she is thirteen and wearing lipstick, or fifteen and competing in a spelling contest, or seventeen and living at a friend’s house because she can’t stand you, one question alone will haunt her: “Daddy, are you there for me?” She needs to know that the answer is always yes. The more you leave her wondering, the harder she will push for an answer–and she might go to extremes to force it from you.
And when she has her first child, or is diagnosed with breast cancer at thirty, or her husband walks out on her and her kids, the question will remain: “Dad, please, Dad, are you there?”
If she knows you are there, dependable and full of love for her, you will have taught her this great lesson. Life is good. Good men help make it so.