I guess Dan being gone weighed on Miss G’s mind this weekend too, because when I got up this morning she’d posted a video on her facebook page mentioning him being out of town. “My stepdad, Dan-- the actual one I live with, my... dad -- is in Reno visiting my stepsister...”

She swings the word “dad” like a right hook. Defensive, like she’s daring someone to challenge it. You can hear the anger layered underneath, see the contempt and hurt skitter across her face when she says it. It breaks my heart for her, and for her father. My instinct is to call him and say “Listen to this. How can that be okay with you?” but I don’t, knowing it would make no difference. I’ve tried. I told him when I found the piece of paper that had “My dad does not care about me!” written about 20 times on it, like a student’s punishment. He stepped it up the next couple weekends, but fell back into the usual rut after a bit.

He just doesn’t get it. He got a job offer in LA a few years back and refused to take it, telling me, “I’d never see Miss G!” I thought, Wow. He really has no idea that he could live and work in another state and keep right on seeing her just as much as he does now.

In his mind, he’s a caring and involved father. In Miss G’s, he’s the daddy who’s supposed to love her but doesn’t, and she thinks it’s her fault somehow.

And in mine... In mine, he’s a broken man who can’t spend too much time with his daughter, because it might open him to the entirety of what he’s destroyed. And if he glimpses that, he’ll never come back from it. Never.

I used to hate him. Then I felt sorry for him. And now I think-- he's had twelve years of chances. This isn't circumstance; this is what he's chosen. And thank God for Dan. Thank God every minute of every day for Dan.


  1. *Hugs* for Miss G. And prayers for Dan!

  2. You are such a great momma. :) I second Amy's hugs, and send some more for you too!