by Cherise Holt, Nurse, Australia
When I was a little girl I just knew my Dad loved me . . .
Alongside my Mum he was committed to providing a safe and supportive home for me and my two brothers. As a baby he warmly cuddled and gently cared for me in every way he knew how, he would sing me songs and make me giggle. As I grew he would enjoy being playful with me, giving me a horsey-ride to my bedroom at bed time or tickling me with his beard to make me really smile.
He has always been a highly dedicated man, committed to his work, our family and truthfully to anything he has ever done. He worked shift work for many years to provide and whilst life was never about money or things, he spent every opportunity with us at school activities, taking us on our annual fishing holiday or simply recording hours of home video movies in the back yard.
My Dad once seemed to me like nothing really worried him, the strong male who could move, make, fix, eat, explain or do absolutely anything. The quiet man who never appeared to cry or be sad; he didn’t show his emotions and never seemed to complain although I could tell if he was angry or frustrated about something.
As I grew from a girl into a young woman I felt like my Dad and I had also grown miles apart. My Mum was the one I would go to for warm cuddles, long talks about my feelings or to cry with. My Dad and I would share a hug on occasion and as we did so less consistently our embrace seemed to feel more unnatural, and for me uncomfortable. I began to think my Mum and I were much closer which I felt guilty about and I was hurt at the thought that my Dad was perhaps holding back from me.
I have always known without doubt, that my Dad would do absolutely anything for me at any moment and without hesitation. But I began to feel the hurt of what he was not doing; he wasn’t reaching out to hug or to hold me, he wasn’t telling me that I was growing into a beautiful or gorgeous young woman and he didn’t use the words ‘I love you’. I was watching other girls and their Dads and I used to think they had a connection with their Dad that I was missing out on.
I am now in my late twenties and it has not been long since I have realised just how much I had been missing the connection between us; and taken responsibility for the fact that I had been holding back from him. At some point in my childhood I began to seek recognition, for love, for words and affection, anything to show me that I was special or confirm to me that I was loved. I held impossible expectations over my Dad that he was not fulfilling – but how could he when he had no clue they existed?
As a woman I held these same expectations over any other men I had met in my life. I wanted them to show me love in some way or to tell me how they loved me before I would be love with them. But nothing they said or did was ever really enough, I was still holding back, measuring and expecting – waiting for something more.
Since my connection with Universal Medicine, that something more has finally unfolded. However it has been nothing either given or said to me by another, it has presented through a deep connection to me and the unfolding of a deep self-love of who I am. With this love, I know I am truly beautiful, and that I actually am love so I don’t need to search for it with anyone else and I don’t need anyone to tell me this to know it as truth.
Today when I feel how lovely I am as a woman there is no need for anyone else to do anything, of course this includes my Dad. When I feel the love of simply being me, I can feel how lovely he is too. I don’t think of him as only a strong man who is capable of anything, for me it feels like when I was a little girl and he was so gentle and tender with me, we didn’t have to do anything back then – just be ourselves.
I have always known my Dad has loved me, and not because of anything that he has ever done for me but because I have felt it. Yes I feel it when he looks in my eyes or as I have begun to hug him again, but most importantly to me I feel it before he does a thing or says a word, or if I’m not even with him and it is in any moment that we are already deeply connected. I can feel how much it hurts both of us if I hold myself back from honouring the love I naturally am as a beautiful woman from who he naturally is, a deeply tender man.
Just like me, my Dad has his own way of expressing the love he feels. A year ago I told my Dad that I loved him and he reciprocated the sentiment, in that moment I heard the three words that I had realised I was once longing to hear, only to confirm within me that I have actually never needed to hear them at all.