A good Daddy will always do what he has to do…even if it means doing it alone.

June 9, 2014 in The Very Few Times I'll Admit to Having a Soul

He said the minute he held her, he knew his reason for being:

To be her daddy.

They married young.  He was in law enforcement and she was a young professional.

For years in their marriage, she struggled with an unbeatable addiction to prescription medication.  It was the skeleton in their closet.  He did his best to keep drugs off the streets but yet couldn’t keep them out of his own home.

He begged.  He threatened.  He made ultimatums.

He kept thinking maybe she’ll out grow it.  Maybe she’ll just stop?  Maybe she’ll get tired of the struggle?  Maybe she’ll stop lying about it?  Maybe she’ll stop hiding it?  Maybe she’ll stop draining the bank account for it?

Rehab after rehab after rehab.  No such luck.

After many prayers of “Why me?” and “What did I do to deserve this life?” and “How do I keep keeping on like this?”…they discovered a baby was on the way.

He felt confident this was the love she needed to get her life straight.

And she did.  For nine months only.

When their baby girl was 10 months old, he could no longer tolerate coming home from a full day on the job, to a crying baby in soiled diapers and the same pajamas she slept in the night before.  With her mom asleep, or actually, passed out…on the couch.

She chose to return to her addiction.

For months, he was doing those middle of the night feedings.  He was bathing, warming bottles, and loving his little girl.

At 18 months old, that little girl was packed up and her daddy started them a new life.

Just the two of them.

He was going to do all he could to protect her and give her the best life he could.

For many years, he worked the crime in the streets while his little girl was in day care.  No help from the mother.  She was nowhere to be found.

No child support.  No phone calls.  No letters in the mail.

He potty-trained.  He taught how to eat with a spoon.  He took her from a crib to a big girl bed.

He saved his sick days so he could stay home with his baby girl when she was sick.

He rocked her in his recliner while she cried and rushed her to the bathroom when she was sick.  After days of no sleep and a much better feeling baby girl, he called his mom to come stay over long enough for him to sleep a few hours, then go back to work.

He walked her to her class her first day of kindergarten.  He took her camping.

He coached her softball team.

Keith Cayla Softball

He removed training wheels.

He trimmed bangs.  He knotted up pony-tails.  He tied ribbons.

He called out spelling words.  He asked for vocabulary definitions.

He sat bedside when the tonsils came out.

2005 Dec 005

He had “the talk.”

He stayed up late for Santa.  He made sure the Easter Bunny came.

He planned birthday parties.

Keith Cayla Birthday

He took her to church.  He taught her about Jesus.  He exemplified compassion, understanding and patience.

He has given unending love.

As she has grown, he has had to adjust from her being his baby girl to her now being his young lady.

He has taken her skiing.

Keith Cayla Skiing

He attends choir programs.  He cheers at softball games.  He picks her up from school at 4:15 pm.

Now…he is teaching her to drive.

Keith Cayla Drive

He is suggesting longer skirts.

He is woefully approving of high heels.

He is unsure of her eye shadow.

He is paying a cell phone bill.

He is teaching her about money.

He is helping with college-credit accounting homework.

Keith Cayla Study

He is planning for college.

He is reprimanding her and grounding her.

From that same recliner he rocked her to sleep in, he rocked her while she cried in, and rocked her while she kissed his cheek.

Many years ago.

Keith Recliner

He’s been her coach, her tutor, her warden, her protector, her therapist.

Her doctor, her stylist, her travel agent, her chauffeur, her chef.

Her leader, her follower, her sidekick.

Her biggest fan.

Her one and only.

He’s even been her mother.

But he will always, always be her Daddy.

Keith Cayla

Happy Father’s Day, Keith.

YOU did it.

Barbara June 9, 2014 at 11:52 am

Beautiful story about a wonderful man! Happy Father’s Day to Keith! Now, I gotta go get a tissue because you made me cry, dang it!

Carrie June 9, 2014 at 11:57 am

Thank you, Barbi! He is a good man.

I’ve always heard to watch how a man treats his mother because that’s how he’ll treat you.

Keith totally put a new spin on that for me…it’s all about how he treats his little girl.

Peggy Scarborough June 9, 2014 at 11:58 am

I think I love him more than you…
Cayla’s luck started when she was put in his arms for the very first time; one day, she’ll put her arms through his and walk down the aisle, hopefully, to an awaiting young man who reminds her of her daddy.

Carrie June 9, 2014 at 12:00 pm

She has certainly had a perfect example of what to look for in a man.

Just like I did.

Regina June 9, 2014 at 12:52 pm

Awe geeze Carrie, you got me bawling like a baby. That was beautiful. So glad he stood up for her and did that.

Carrie June 9, 2014 at 2:43 pm

Thank you, Regina.

Said it was tough, but she deserved a chance at the best life possible and it was up to him to provide it.

He has an extremely big heart. And he’s done an excellent job keeping her on track and on the right path.

jennifer niles June 9, 2014 at 12:53 pm

this is beautiful.
getting me all weepy!! in the best way.
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Carrie June 9, 2014 at 1:02 pm

Aww…thank you. Weepy in the best way is my kind of weepy!

Love.

Lisa Guedry June 9, 2014 at 1:48 pm

Ok I was hanging on by a thread before…but after Peggy’s comment and your reply, I’m in a full blown sob!!!!!! Happy Farhers Day, Keith!!!!

Carrie June 9, 2014 at 2:23 pm

He’s a good man. I joke a lot about him and tell him I only married him because they both are great blog fodder…but he’s it for me.

I’ve always been told if I find a man half as good as my own daddy, I’ll be doing good. And I do believe I did.

Love you, Lisa. =)

The Ginger Warrior June 9, 2014 at 2:50 pm

Beauuuuutiful my red-headed sista!!! xoxoxox

Carrie June 9, 2014 at 3:02 pm

Thank you, my dear…xoxo back to you!

Becky Hill June 9, 2014 at 5:12 pm

Lovely, lovely, lovely.

Carrie June 9, 2014 at 6:55 pm

Thank you, Becky…=)

kk June 9, 2014 at 6:08 pm

Can’t see for the tears but that’s ok. I think it’s come full circle…then they found you and became a family.
Hugs to all and Happy Fathers Day to one spectacular Daddy!!
kk

Carrie June 9, 2014 at 6:56 pm

KK…you got it right. Spectacular is a good word here.

You are so kind. Thank you.

Adelyn June 10, 2014 at 11:30 am

Keith sounds amazing…nothing beats a good dad! Nothing.

You did scare me crazy because I thought I had missed Father’s Day.
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Carrie June 10, 2014 at 11:37 am

He is. He’s a pretty darn good guy.

HA! Father’s Day is still a few days away. Rarely am I ahead of the game…this is very unlike me to be early.

On anything! =)
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Amber June 10, 2014 at 12:49 pm

So sweet.

What a fantastic father he is!
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Carrie June 10, 2014 at 12:56 pm

He is. He’s certainly pushed, pulled and hauled his load.

It’s cool to see that he sees it starting to pay off now, too.

J.R. June 10, 2014 at 2:26 pm

Sassy I think classy for sure. Love you you are a good mom! ,!

Carrie June 10, 2014 at 3:44 pm

Thank you for that. It means more than you know. Means tons to me coming from you.

Love!!

J.R. June 10, 2014 at 2:29 pm

And by the way that is MY girl …

Carrie June 10, 2014 at 3:23 pm

Yes, yes…you are right. She is definitely her PawPaw’s girl.

=)

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