January 21, 2005

Missing Daddy

My baby girl is missing her Daddy. It's so hard for a five-year-old child to understand this. Last night as I sat by her bed, stroking her hair while big tears fell from her sad blue eyes, my heart broke into a million pieces. I can deal with my own saddness. But watching my child mourn for her Daddy because she doesn't understand why he won't come home is absolutely unbearable.

The day that Robert left for his training, we took quite a few pictures. There were several of Emily and him together, so I had double prints made and gave Emily her own copies. They were laying on her desk, so I picked up one and gave it to her.

"Here, baby. Maybe if you look at this picture of you and Daddy it will help you feel better."

She cried even more.

You see, there is no simple answer. There is no quick fix. There is no way to make any of us feel better. We just have to learn to deal with it each day.

She drifted off into a fitful sleep, hugging the picture of her and Robert to her chest. I returned to my desk with the remaining pictures, pondering what I could do for her to help.

Here's what I came up with:

Emily's 'Daddy necklace'

I printed out the little tag on top that says, "AMERICA...Home of the Free and the Brave". The I cropped the picture to the same width and glued it to the paper below the tag. Next, I laminated the front and back, punched holes in the top and inserted matching ribbon. She'll be able to wear it around her neck and be comforted throughout the day when she sees her and her Daddy together.

I don't know if this will work or not. I don't know how much it will help her, if any at all. I'm just a Soldier's Wife, doing the best I can with what I have.