fatherhood

‘I’ll show up as the pizza man.’ He was committed from the get-go. ‘MY DAD IS ABDUCTING ME TODAY!’: Widow recalls ‘pizza man turned perfect father’ as new husband steps into dad-role for her adopted sons

“We paraded excitedly into the courtroom. The twins, in all of their manic glory, ran about, spun in the judge’s chair, making tons of noise. A shoe was thrown across the room. The oldest sat back and watched in amusement. When the judge asked each kid if he wanted Tom to be his legal father, all 3 responded ‘YES!’ He then turned to Tom and said with a wink, ‘No backsies.’”

‘The cancer unit? How’d this go from ‘Hawaii 5-0’ to ‘Fighting-4-Life’ in 24 hours? This can’t be right.’: Dad insists he’ll be ‘taking my family to the top, whatever it takes’ despite infant daughter’s Down syndrome diagnosis, then cancer battle

“‘I will not be leaving her side,’ I responded in the clearest daddy-bear tone I had. Dad’s on guard. It was the look in the new doctor’s eyes that told me, I needed to go. I kissed my perfect baby girl goodbye. I’m the bug being drawn into the glowing light of the bug-zapper. Like a true ‘lamb-to-the-slaughter’ walk.”

‘Ma’am, I’m sorry but your husband is deceased.’ The officer found drug paraphernalia. My world crashed.’: Husband leaves wife, toddler behind after fatal overdose

“When I met Danny, I had this crazy premonition one night. I said to myself, ‘This is going to be a tragedy at some point.’ Fast forward 3 years later and he was dead. The last time I saw my husband was that Saturday morning. He gave me a hug and said, ‘I love you babe.’ He left and never came back. He was found in his vehicle.”

‘I was accused of murder. Twice.’: Mother of 6 recalls murder accusations brought against her after gaining custody of half-brother in wake of parent’s deaths

“My father signed over custody to me. The judge granted it one day before he died. We were settling into our new lives when I heard a knock at my door. A USPS worker handed me a certified envelope. I read the horrific accusations. Homicide. Someone is saying I murdered my father. Murdered. That I killed him. Me. His daughter. I hit my knees, sobbing, wanting to die. ‘This is it. I’m going to be arrested.’ I was petrified. What if someone actually believes this?”

‘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.”

‘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.”

‘Explain this.’ It was printed copies of every text I’d exchanged with my previous girlfriend.’: Single dad’s harrowing experience dating a narcissist, urges ‘even the strong can succumb to the cunningness of this evil’

“She had brainwashed me. She made me go through my social media accounts to explain my relationship with every female friend I had. If they didn’t meet her criteria, they needed to be deleted. My girlfriend ruthlessly pounded away at me with accusations of not being honest. It was torture. We would stay up all night arguing, the sun would rise, and I would go to work. She was obsessed with it.”

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