Monday, April 5, 2010

D for Daddy's Darling Daughter


[I know I did D for Drabble yesterday, but that was cheating, because I wasn't supposed to blog on Sundays. Here is the real post for D]

Born when my father was 37, I was always Daddy's Darling Daughter.

Special moments? There were never any special moments with him! He gave himself so completely to me, that every moment that should have been special, was only just another ordinary moment.

When I was still a baby, he would hoist me on his shoulders, and take me on long walks pointing out things for me to see. Everyday, he would indentify the flowers in the garden, and encourage me to smell them, and rub my fingers over their petals- no wonder, therefore, I knew the botanical names of most flowers long before my fifth birthday. At night, he would read to me- works of fiction, and passages from the encyclopedia.

When I was in primary school, Saturdays were my special days with him. He would take me to office and allow me to sit on his swivel chair and scribble with the blue and red pen from the pen-stand on his desk. When he visited the concentrator plant, he would let me tag along behind him, and would watch patiently while the metallurgical engineer told me how they went about extracting the metal. Once, when he went to inspect an abandoned mine, he took me along, even though he knew the mountain was too steep for my ten year old feet, and that he would have to carry me most of the way.

When I became a teenager, I never felt the need for a boyfriend, because I had my father. We would watch his favourite Westerns together, and he would take me to museums and art galleries. I would often surprise him by dropping in at his office, and he would treat me to dosas at his favourite diner. In all my years at school, he never missed a single Sports Day, and he often embarrassed me by clapped the loudest even when I felt I did not really deserve the applause.

When I went to college and started having a life of my own, he never held me back. He never demanded more time or attention from me than I was willing to give. Always proud of me and everything I did, he never told me, like some parents are prone to do, about how much he had done for me, and what I owned him in return.

I grew up, got a job, got married, moved away. His dementia started taking hold of him, and he sunk deeper and deeper into himself. There were times when he did not recognise me. Times when he spoke to me of “his daughter”, and asked if I had met her. But even those moments were precious, because they only showed how deeply he cared for his daughter, and how proud he was of her.

To my father, nothing was more important than being a father. His entire existence was wrapped around me, his only child, and I took that for granted. I always adored my father, but it was only when I became a parent myself that I realised how rare it was for someone to give himself so completely to another person.

A father like mine is Special. With him, even the most ordinary moment with him was Special.

26 comments:

arlee bird said...

That was a beautiful bittersweet posts. As the father to three daughters and a step-father to one I hope I hold a similarly special place in their lives. Those years when they were growing up were wonderful times. Now they are grown and I don't seem enough of them and I miss them, but now they will go on to hopefully become special to children of their own.

Thank you for such a lovely post.
Lee

Marjorie said...

You made me cry for what you lost and for what I wish I had.

ladyfi said...

Oh, such a tender, touching tribute. We owe our security and well-being to parents like these...

Hannah Stoneham said...

This is a very touching post. thanks for sharing it.

Hannah

WELCOME TO MY WORLD OF POETRY: said...

My daughter was a Daddies Girl, she could twist him around his little finger, She was with me when he passed away, his last guesture was giving her the most beautiful smile before he took his last breath, something we will always remember.

Loved your post a most worthy "D" challenge blog.
Yvonne.

The Alliterative Allomorph said...

What a heartfelt post. I really appreciate honest stories like this. Thanks for sharing. It's a pleasure to read.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

He sounds like an incredible man.

Ann Elle Altman said...

What a wonderful look at your father. I think he was a special man and I'm sorry that he got sick near the end of his life. Thank you for sharing.

ann

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I was the daughter my father always wanted and I wish he'd lived long enough for me to appreciate that fact.

melodygreen said...

What a beautiful tribute to your daddy. I was a daddy's girl too... it means the world to me that I knew my dad was proud of me. He passed away a few years ago and I so miss being able to get to know him as an adult. It is evident from your post just how special you were to your father... what a treasure you received!

Trudy said...

Oh Rayna! That brought tears to my eyes, what a beautiful and loving tribute to an amazing father. Your memories are so vivid and precious. It must have been difficult and bittersweet to have him ill at the end of his life, but what a treasure to have all of the beautiful memories.

God bless you dear!

Lisa said...

What a beautiful post Rayna. :) You were incredibly blessed to have such a wonderful daddy. :)

Blessings,
Lisa

Watery Tart said...

Oh, Natasha, this was a beautiful tribute! I knew you and your dad were close, but I hadn't seen all this detail before. He sounds like such an amazing man. You've made my eyes water.

Jane Kennedy Sutton said...

I think it’s the beautiful memories we have of the people we love that help us get through their tough times and our own. And, as is apparent by your lovely post, those memories also keep the person very much alive in our minds.

Jen said...

This is so sweet and touching! I found your blog thanks to the A-Z challenge that we are both participating in and your D is awesome!

Mason Canyon said...

What a wonderful tribute to your Father. His legacy definitely lives on in you.

Wanda said...

You're definitely lucky to have had such a dedicated father. Very touching post!

Galen Kindley--Author said...

Thanks for dropping by my blog today. It was good to see you again.

Clearly, you have wonderful memories and experiences to cherish. My family background is a bit more dysfunctional, so, it's nice to share with your very warm relationship. Good post. Galen.

Carol Conway-Fleisher said...

What a touching story. My relationship with my father is not so good. I cried for the loss of your father and for the father I wish I had.
Also, thanks for the blog award! :)

Beth said...

That's a beautifully written testament to an amazing man and father! You are blessed to have been given such a gift! :)

Al said...

Wonderful post.
How lucky you are, and at the same time how terribly sad for you to have lost such a wonderful man.

Not enough hours! said...

Blogger is acting up today - can't see any of the comments, though I know there were plenty. I could, of course pull out the comments from gmail, but am feeling too lazy to do that right now.

Thank you, everyone for your comments. I always adored my father, but the unfortunate thing is that I never realised how very special he was till it was perhaps too late to tell him so.

@ Lee - I am sure your daughters treasure you as much as I do my father.

Love, Rayna

Trevor Peck said...

Great post...great minds think alike!

Love in the Truth.

dipali said...

What a wonderful father you had, and have, still living on in such wonderful memories:)

DEZMOND said...

a very touching post, Rayna ;)

Not enough hours! said...

@ Trevor - it is the most obvious one, isn't it?

@ Dipali - it will be four years in July, but he is as much with me now as he ever was.

@ Dezmond - thank you.

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