Daddy’s Girl This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

     I came home from school one day and he was crying. Is this really happening? I wondered. I had never seen him cry. I thought he was not afraid of anything. How could my strong, hard-working, loving father be crying? My father had always been my knight in shining armor and still is. We did everything together. My father has six girls, but he and I have a really close bond. We spend a lot of time together playing golf and going to the Red Sox, Patriots or Boston College games. It’s been this way ever since I was little. I remember asking him if he ever wished he’d had boys instead of girls, and he said, “Why would I want boys when I have you?” He is my hero and best friend.

The day I came home and saw my father crying, it was because my mother wanted a divorce. I thought my life was over. How could I be happy without my father around? I don’t think my sisters knew what was happening. One, Khrystyne, was only six and the twins were just two. I grew up that day without even realizing it. I went from being 12 to 20 in a matter of minutes. I had to be the strong older sister, or at least I thought I did. My sisters and I spent a lot of time together. My mother worked a lot, so we did not see much of her.

Being Daddy’s little girl, I did not know how I would deal with the pain of him leaving. This changed my life drastically. In a few months we had to sell our house and we moved with my mom into our summer house. My father moved to Nantucket to get away from everything. I thought I would never forgive my mother.

Luckily I still see my father a lot; he comes to visit whenever he can. It is funny because whenever we go on vacations, people ask if the twins are my children. I don’t know if it’s because I look older or because I act like a mother when we are with my dad. To the twins, my father was a stranger since they were so young when everything happened. Unfortunately Khrystyne and my father are constantly fighting. She thinks he does not like her, but the fighting only comes from love. My dad wants to give her the world. I see so much of my father in her.

Being able to look back and remember the anger I felt upsets me. Even though my sisters and I seemed to grow up really fast, now that I’m older I look at my parents’ divorce in a new light. I have forgiven my mother. I know she would not be the same person if she had stayed with my father. I respect her and her decision, and understand that she knew she would be a better parent for us if she were happy.

The divorce made me a stronger person. I thought I had to be there for my sisters. The younger ones have all grown close to my father. We are always there for each other through the good times and the bad. We are best friends, and I love them more than anything.

The relationship with my father has only grown stronger over the years. I do not get to see him every day, but not a day passes that I do not talk to him. We spend every Sunday cheering for the Patriots. He comes home to try to beat me in golf. I know I mean the world to him. It’s funny that when I go to Nantucket to visit, his friends know more about me than some of my friends do. He is always there for me, even if I have to take a boat to see him.

My parents’ divorce was the hardest thing I’ve had to deal with, but both my mother and my father are better people without the other. I have learned it was for the best. I love them both and could not ask for better parents.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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