Ada’s mom was pregnant with her when we broke up. It was a painful time period. I was angry. Nothing was certain. Even the rights I had taken for granted as a father with her siblings, Ella and Lucan, were put into question.
I wasn’t at her birth. I will always feel hurt about that. It took almost two years before we gradually made it to 50/50 parenting time.
Every visit was precious in those early days. I summoned all of my “be present, be patient” mojo hoping to accelerate our bond.
At bottle time, I’d caress her forehead, sing her the “Daddy Loves You” song and pull her close into my warmth. That became our thing.
She’s almost three now. Our relationship has caught up. We’re on par with the other two.
Today, she brought me her empty bottle, “Num nums Daddy.” She watched me fill it then took my hand to lead us to the rocker.
I caressed her head and sang her the song, our familiar love ritual now.
I’m proud and grateful for how things turned out for us. We love each other.
I’m also grateful that her mom and I have grown to share our joy for the children together. It makes the difference for all of us.