I won’t put your name out here for the world to see, but you know who you are. She’s eight now. E I G H T! Can you believe that? Eight years ago, we brought a dark haired, blue eyed baby girl home the day before Mother’s Day in 2011. You were DAD OF THE YEAR! I truly mean that, because that’s literally all you gave her, one year.
Once we split, and you moved back home, that was it. I never kept her from you, we had legal papers that wouldn’t have allowed me to, even if I didn’t want her going, I wouldn’t have been able to stop it. You knew my phone number, you knew my address, your family did too, y’all just didn’t care. You told everyone I was keeping her from you, but you just didn’t bother to show up to your scheduled visitations. Your family never bothered to call.
Twice in seven years is how many times your family has laid eyes on her… and the last time was almost SIX years ago. You haven’t seen her almost five and a half years now… probably closer to four at this point. You let girlfriends, friends, hunting, and so many other things come before her. You had plenty of chances. You would cry and beg to see her, we would arrange it, and then you either wouldn’t show or you would… but you would be 2 and 3 hours late, every single time.
The last time you saw her, you hadn’t seen her in about 6 months. You brought your now fiancé with you, and for some reason, you nor your fiancé could understand why Brodeigh didn’t really know how to act. Did you expect a 3-and-a-half-year-old to be excited? Did you expect her to run to a stranger with open arms? Did you expect her to want to ride in the car with you? You couldn’t understand the things she was saying, you didn’t know what she liked, you didn’t know how much she LOVED cheese sticks, you didn’t know a lot of things. You were a stranger to her and for some reason, you and your fiancé just couldn’t understand why.
You have another child now, and from what I’ve been told you are a phenomenal father. Your family is as involved as they can be. Y’all are there for birthdays and holidays, you will be there for his first day of school, first t-ball game, when he gets his license, graduation, his wedding day, when he has his first child, and so many things in between.
How did you choose one child over the other? If I could ask you one question, that would be it, how did you choose? Why did you have to choose? Did someone give you an ultimatum? Does anyone ever ask about my daughter? Her hair is so long and beautiful, you wouldn’t believe how light it is compared to the day we brought her home. Her eyes are crystal blue, she has the CUTEST freckles, she’s so petite, she loves science, reading, and music. She just recently got a HUGE opportunity to model for a well-known children’s clothing brand! How could anyone not want to be a part of her life? I am thankful for every second spent with her.
She never asked much about her lack of a father, she never seemed to notice. She would bring stuff to me and my dad (her Granbodie) on Father’s Day. I took her hunting and fishing. She sat in my lap and drove my Jeep around the yard. I did it all. I played both roles. I went to every doctor’s appointment, school function, birthday party, holiday gatherings, everything.
The day you signed your rights over, with your fiancé holding your hand, I was relieved and pissed off. I was so mad that you two were laughing and carrying on like it was no big deal. My now husband and myself just watched in disbelief. How was this so easy for you? My husband knew the amazing child you were so easily signing away, how could you? How could your fiancé, the mother of your second child, not be fearful that she may be in my shoes one day? There you were, signing the dotted line, like you had just signed the papers on a new car. You looked so at peace with yourself. I don’t know why you chose the path you did. I will never understand. I am glad you are a good father to your son. I’m glad that’s one less fatherless child in this world.
I have every single cellphone I have owned the last seven years saved. Every single text is saved on each of them. I have copies of every paper that applies to us. I know there may come a day where she asks questions, and I am more than prepared to answer them with the truth.
I do want to thank you, for giving me such a sweet and beautiful child. She is so unique, and I love being her mother. I thank you for signing your rights over that day. I thank you for allowing my husband to adopt her. That was the best thing you could have done for her. She is so happy. She is loved. She is chosen every single day. My husband chose to love her, he chose to adopt her, he chose to be everything you didn’t want to be.
This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Amanda Byram, 29, of Georgia. You can follow her journey on Instagram here. Do you have a similar experience? We’d like to hear your important journey. Submit your own story here. Be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTube for our best videos.
Read more from Amanda here:
‘Can I sleep with you tonight mommy?’ I still get chills thinking about it. I cried my eyes out.’: Mom swears her child is ‘the reason I am alive,’ after traumatic relationship leaves her contemplating suicide
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