Today, I found myself beaming today, happy, gleeful, and laughing. My heart swelled with pleasure. My eyes gleamed with awe. However the smile, stretched ear to ear, is not for the meek and vulgar compliment, given by a boy my age, nor is it for the new dress I just bought, or any other selfish want. But, for the father who hugs his child. For the mother who shows her child love, with a kiss in the morning and a kiss at night. For the family, that not only attends church, but prays before every meal. For the mother who wakes up before her family every morning, to cook them breakfast. For the father who rushes home to see his daughter's recital, because he knows every moment is precious not only to him but his child.
My smile is for the love given by the parents, for the child who knows their parents are always there. My grin is caused by the respect the child gives in return for the love they receive. I nod at a child who, not only answers with " Yes mam" and "Yes sir", but runs when called, or when she sees groceries, do not allow her mother to lift a single bag. My happiness is reserved for the family who respects, not only each other, but God. To hold values and morals before the social trends or fads that, I hope you agree, is more astounding then any type of skill, beauty, or hashtag.
I cannot help but tear up, not in sorrow mind you, when I see a father claiming his child is his world. I cry out in glee when I witness a father and child, at a movie, game, store, or their yard, laughing and playing together. I tremble with admiration when the mother and father view their child, no matter the age, as their past, present, and future; and believe with all their being that their child is going to be someone important. I sigh, with wonderment, when I notice the tenderness in a mother's gaze, when she watches her child accomplish something so substantial, it brings tears to her eyes. My heart nearly stops when a father listens to his pregnant wife's stomach, just to hear his child's heart. I chuckle in delight, when I catch a glimpse of the new father panicking over his infant child's cries. I exhale in contentment, when I notice the love the parents pour on their children. When the parents not only show affection, but put so much thought into a gift, they lose themselves in it.
My smirk of approval is for the father, who accidentally calls his daughter by her embarrassing nickname, in front of her friends. For the mother, who would do anything for her daughter; even drive countless miles to give her the hug she desperately needs, the first day of college. For the father, who would buy a shot gun the day before prom to intimidate her date. For the same father with the shot gun, who also says to the date,after throwing a shotgun shell at the young boy " The next one comes faster after 10 pm." For the mother, who comforts the child after a bad break up, because it's been almost 4 hours that her child has been weeping. For the father, who hunts down a cheating boyfriend for a " lesson of a lifetime". For the mother, who holds onto the heart of her child till her dying days. For the child that holds her hand as she draws her last breath.
For the father who stands strong, because he knows he is the rock. For the Mother that holds her child's hand, during a cancer treatment session. For the father, who breaks down, when hearing his daughter has breast cancer. For the mother who squeezes her daughter's hand, when the needle enters her breast plate. For the daughter, who never once showed fear, so she would not scare her family. For the father, who never abandon his three daughters, or leave the mother with nothing, but the clothes on her back. For the mother, who got on her feet and took up three jobs to support her children. For the father, who even though is not there, pays child support on time and never abuses them.
For the mother, I have and will never leave. For the Father I wish I had, and forgive for all he has done. And for the child I hope and pray I was. For the sisters I always will protect. For the family, even fatherless, I know we are.
(This poem is for my mother, Sabrina Hernandez. Thank you for everything. I owe you my life.)