My daughter had a crisis tonight. It was a wonderful, sad, easily understandable crisis. But it was a crisis she chose to share with me, from her heart. This has not been something that is just taken for granted lately.

My little girl (who am I kidding, she’s twelve!!) does not talk about what she is feeling much at all. I think much of that has to do with repressed feelings about the divorce. So when she does talk, you better believe I listen.

Tonight it was nothing more than forgetting some homework at school. Most children will talk about that, but Ally really opened up with it. She said she felt like she never does anything right. My Daughter said that!! Just this morning, we had talked a little, and I asked her that very question, if she ever felt like that. Then I told her what I know is the truth. I said, “Ally, you do most things right. I want you to know that I notice it, too.”

My relationship with her is close, but most times, she just won’t let anyone near her heart. She’ll backhand them away if they try. She won’t be mean about it, she’ll just not answer questions, and no one, nor nothing can make her. Is she stubborn, or protective? Maybe a little of both.

Whatever she be, I am glad she opened up to me tonight. I love her so, and the thought of her feeling like she can’t do anything right breaks my heart. But I also know that most kids feel that way sometimes, so, rather than throw her a pity party, I just re-told her the truth. I'll keep reaffirming that with her. Maybe it will help.

But most of all, I hope Ally knows that anytime she wants to talk, I will listen. I will leave work if I have to, I will do whatever it takes to be there, to listen. I have always been here, but she has not always taken advantage of it. God, please let my daughter take way advantage of it. Amen.


Messy Christian said...

Hi Tom ... I'm glad you had that talk with your daughter. (I'm sorry I couldn't reply to your e-mail yet ... I'm so behind my e-mails) Listening, and affirming her with your love is the best thing you could do at this point, definitely ..

Deb said...

Ally is very fortunate to have a dad who makes her a priority.

Tom Reindl said...

Thanks for the encouragement, MC and Deb. Am I a good dad? Hmmm. For all I have been told, and all I have learned, I wish I knew one thousand times more what to do. Thanks.

Beloved said...

I'm so glad you were in a place to not only hear, but to listen to her!!! I'm excited to watch how you will continue to encourage her, and also enliven her heart to the ultimate Encourager of Christ, and how He is so all out, hardcare, and raging in love with her, and how He is so after her heart in every emotion, expression, encounter, and event that will come her way!! (wow, I did that with all e words and I wasn't even trying) ; )

Tom Reindl said...

Monica, thanks! Yours was a gentle reminder that it isn't up to me to solve this problem, but that God will. Good "e" words, too! :)