Friday, January 2, 2015

| of daddy's hands. |

  “It’s too far, Daddy.” And in her mind, no leap was more perilous. “I can’t do it.”
“You didn’t know that when you decided you could climb the tree, did you?” Tenderness flavors his question, but if she isn’t mistaken, those are hints of humor she sees in his eyes. “Now you know why I told you not to try it without me, don’t you?”
Pride crippled in the face of fear, she manages a meager nod. “You’re not going to go away, are you?”
“I’m going back inside in a minute.” In spite of his words, he takes a step closer to the trunk and leans his weight against the bark. “But I’m not going without you. You’ll have to jump.”
“Jump?” The word feels like a slap in her face—then like a chunk of ice settling deep in her stomach.  “I can’t. I told you it’s too far. Don’t make me.”
“I’m not gonna make you.” He stretches his arms. “You’ll have to do it on your own—and I’ll be here whenever you’re ready.”
The bark is cutting into her clenched fingers. His arms look a mile off—the ground ten times farther. Vague in the back of her brain, she tastes the blood and feels the bruises that the ground will give her—if his grasp doesn’t connect with her body in time.
“What if you don’t catch me?”
She doesn’t comprehend his chuckle. “What if I don’t catch you? You really think I’d even think of letting you fall?”
“But I was bad.” Tears tangle with her confession. “I did it—even when you told me to wait.”
“I know.” He lifts his arms higher. “But that doesn’t mean I’m not gonna catch you when you jump. Isn’t that what daddies are for?”
She swallows a bulge of phlegm somewhere in her throat and ponders for a second. “You really won’t let me fall?”
He smiles, and suddenly she craves the taste of his arms around her. “You’ll just have to trust that I don’t break my promises, darling. When you’re ready to jump, we’ll go inside and read a story together.”
Her breathing slows for a sliver of a second. “What story?”
He pauses, as if he’s thinking. “What about ‘Guess How Much I Love You?’ That’s one of your favorites, huh?”
She gulps and allows herself a ghost of a smile. “I guess.”
He grins. “Whenever you’re ready, I’ll be right here.”
For a sharp fragment of a moment, she studies the ground—then his arms. The seconds feel like hours. Raw, razor-edged shards of eternity.
As she slackens her grasp and feels the force of gravity jerk her body earthward, her breath snags on the rock of a lump in her throat. Free falling. Nothing between her and the ground—except for raw fear.
Fear that abruptly dissolves when she feels his arms grasp her. He holds her for a moment, then sets her on the ground, brushes the fragments of bark from her dress, and takes her hand.
And for the moment, the touch of his hand is her world. She’s standing on solid earth again, and her security is beside her, her battered fingers wrapped in his.
“Now, that wasn’t so bad, was it?”
It’s her turn to pause. “Not after you caught me, Daddy.” She leans into his lap, feeling the fear ebb away. “You’ll always catch me, won’t you?”
He hesitates. “Someday, you’ll be big enough to jump on your own. But til then—well, isn’t that what daddies are for?” He stoops and kisses her dusty forehead. “Are you ready for our story?”
Their story. She nods. “How’d you know that was my favorite story?”
He tips her chin with his fingers and grins into her face. “Because—it’s one of my favorites too.”
                                   *   *   *   *

So grateful I will always have my Heavenly Father who is waiting to catch me even when I'm afraid I'm falling             Blessings,



  1. Beautiful words! so heart warming, I love how it is all clearly descriptive. Thank you for sharing. Hope you are having a fantastic week.


  2. Thanks, Laura! Hope you are having a good week too!


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