My dear little Getty,
I gaze into your eyes and I see wisdom there. A smile washes across your rosy bright face, you give a soft hoot, and you let me know that, despite all my hardships, my other failings, my stumblings, and burdens, I am doing right by you. I slip my finger into your little hand, and you comfort me with the slightest motion: your tiny grip. Your fingers draw softly and close against mine like the petals of the most beautiful flower on a still and silent evening. The warmth of your gentle touch radiates like the sun piercing an autumn chill.
While, by this time, we had hoped and dreamed you would roll and sit and play and eat, we must accept that nature has robbed you of your strength. You cannot explore your universe, so I gladly and willingly expend every effort that you cannot, and I exhaust all the strength I can muster to deliver the universe to you. I am aware that your grasp on my hand is as fragile as your grasp on this life, but just keep hanging on to me for as long as you like because my work has only just begun.
Many will never know or appreciate the full value of such a simple gesture; and I may very well have been one of them had you not been you. Today I know better than to overlook it. I know the effort you expend to extend your tiny grip, and I will never take that for granted. Your meek clasp gives me strength I never knew I possessed and, from what I can tell, our chugging through on your behalf has helped inspire many others to discover untapped strength and generosity of their own.
The labor of your tiny grip tells me you intend to convey meaning exceeding your abilities to communicate. Through your tiny grip, you tell me I have helped make you happy. Through your tiny grip, you tell me you are warm, fed, and comfortable. Through your tiny grip, you tell me I have performed well today as your father. Through your tiny grip, you tell me you are proud of me. Through your tiny grip, you confide in me your trust. Through your tiny grip, you tell me you would hug me, if you could. Through your tiny grip, you tell me, “Thank you. I love you, Daddy.”
As I return the caress of your delicate hand, I know you understand me, “My pleasure, little owl. Daddy loves you, too.”