The relationship with a single parent can be difficult
|My father was the strong, silent type.
When I was baptized, he was there. As the water poured over my head, he looked on proudly, the corners of his eyes crinkling with the warmth of his smile. He didn’t say anything, but he didn’t have to. I knew how he felt about me. I was his cute little girl, full of potential in his glowing eyes.
When I was seven, my mom let me receive the Eucharist in my first Communion. As I ate the bread, I caught my father standing in the background out of the corner of my eye. He didn’t say anything, but he didn’t have to. His beatific smile told me everything I needed to know.
When I was fourteen, my aunt, my sponsor, took me to the front of the church. I kneeled under the quiet, steady gaze of my father. I knew he wouldn’t speak, but his gaze spoke for him—of warmth, generosity, and goodness.
When I was sixteen, I partook of the sacrament of penance, explaining to the priest in confession my shame in looking at another girl and having... thoughts. He told me I was forgiven, and my shoulders sagged in relief. My father was there. He looked concerned, but he didn’t say much. He never did.
When I was eighteen, I kissed a girl for the first time. I thought about confessing, but I didn’t want it to be a sin. Was it? I wanted to ask my father. He said nothing. He always said nothing. When he gathered his friends and walked away, he never looked back.
I haven’t seen him since.
I never asked the question.
I had my answer.