father

‘I love you, Daddy.’ She held his picture tight, wore his cowboy hat. He was gone, it brought her to tears.’: 4-year-old’s father dies in car crash, ‘now her world is upside down’

“At midnight, we were all asleep. My mother-in-law called, crying. ‘Aaron got into an accident. He is dead.’ I hung up the phone without saying a word. I was so scared to tell my husband. I stared at him for a moment. ‘It’s Aaron.’ I’ll never forget seeing him in so much pain. We had to tell his daughter. ‘You know your daddy loves you a bunch?’ She looked so confused.”

‘Why did my parents break up anyway?’ It took me by surprise. I wanted to be honest.’: Stepmom caught off guard by stepdaughter’s ‘tough questions’ over dad’s relationship with ex

“I put my stepdaughter’s plate on the table. She looked at me. ‘Is being a stepmom really hard?’ All I could think was, ‘we don’t have enough time in the day.’ I braced myself for more. She sat for a minute, eating her eggs and fruit. I thought I was in the clear. Wrong. Here came the hardest question. ‘Why did my mom and dad break up?’ she asked. ‘Uhhhh… Uhhhh… Uhhhh…’ I couldn’t give her all the dirty details.”

‘We found her gravesite. ‘Do you want time alone?’ I was overcome with emotion. ‘I want you with me.’: Widow finally feels ‘peace’ visiting late fiancee’s grave 30 years after fatal car accident

“As we approached the cemetery, I unexpectedly started crying. I’d spent so many painful, isolating days here. I hated this place. It had become a prison within my mind. The emotion hit me, and Shelly grabbed my hand. It took time for us to find Dana’s grave. I started to feel panicked, surprised I had lost the ability to walk right to it. Shelly gave me a big hug as I was, once again, overcome with emotion. I felt a sense of freedom, finally at peace.”

‘What happened, buddy? What happened?’ I laid down next to him, held his hand. An eerie calm came over me.’: Father pleads ‘hug your kids, don’t work too late’ after regretting ‘missing out on things’ with twin son who suddenly died in his sleep

“The evening before was normal. He was healthy and engaged. We had kids over for dinner. We all jumped on the giant trampoline. He got bossy with the other kids and started telling everyone they were playing the game wrong. I pulled him aside. I was stern with him. Too stern in hindsight. And I made him cry. It’s one of the last interactions we had, and I’ve beaten myself up for it. I can still see the tears rolling down his face. ‘But you’re not listening to me. No one listens to me.’”

‘Promise me, whatever happens, take care of Momma.’ The intercom blared. Mom wailed. He was alive, barely.’: Daughter fulfills promise to her beloved daddy after his death ‘no matter what’

“‘I’m sending you to the ICU right now,’ the doctor told my parents. ‘I want a second opinion,’ my father replied. ‘Frank, you don’t have time for a second opinion…’ It was like any typical Thursday in my world. I found it odd no one was there when I arrived, but hoped Mom had taken Daddy to the doctor for the headaches he’d been having. The phone rang. I could hear my aunt saying, ‘calm down, you’ve got to be strong for him.’ He had an aneurysm at the base of his brain. It could rupture at any time.”

‘This little girl needed parents who’d love her no, matter what. Our opportunity was staring us in the face.’: Gay dads adopt ‘tiny, 5-pound, perfect’ baby girl after initial doubts of being ‘enough’ for her

“I think most people envision ‘the call’ as an instantaneously joyous occasion, the fulfillment of a dream. For us, it was a little more nuanced. A birthmother due in 2 weeks had chosen us, but there were potential health risks with the baby and the pregnancy. We didn’t expect a call this early. But less than 2 weeks later, we took her home at 24-hours old.”

‘Nobody else will ever love you.’ I tried to jump out at a stop sign. But I was stuck. This was my ‘destiny.’: Woman overcomes traumatic childhood, abusive relationship to find her ‘soulmate’

“My father took his own life when I was 5 years old. I remember sitting on our front porch, hugging my mom as the paramedics wheeled him out of the house. I remember living at my grandparents’ house for a while after ‘he left.’ My family decided to keep what happened a secret. I continued to believe what my mom would tell me.”

‘I had this overwhelming feeling I was invited out of pity. I blurt out I’m a widow. ‘I’m so sorry,’ she says, horrified.’: Young widow unapologetic for making people uncomfortable, says ‘that is their problem’

“After my husband’s death, I ventured to a kid’s birthday party with my son. I was nervous. As I started mingling with the moms, things got weird. I not-so-casually slid into the conversation that I’m a widow. I was still wearing my rings, so they assumed I was married. This poor woman looked dumbfounded. I kept thinking, ‘Should I have done this differently?’ I cannot pretend my husband didn’t die just to placate people around me.”

‘I’m leaving you, Momma. Daddy, I go with you to make money.’ His daddy hugged him. ‘Not yet buddy, one day.’ Then he drove away.’: Wife warns others looking to join husband’s career path to ‘be sure you’re ready for this life’

“After the teary goodbyes, we walked inside. Our son tossed his shoes off and threw himself on the floor sobbing. It broke my heart because I knew he is now realizing that ‘See ya in 2 weeks’ is a different kind of goodbye. What broke my heart more was the pain in his daddy’s eyes as he drove off.”

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