Taking off the training wheels

By Jan Davis
Special to The PREVIEW

Our mama died when we were very young and Daddy couldn’t bear the thought of losing one of us. He lived in fear of something terrible happening to his baby girls. Because of his fears, I missed many normal childhood adventures, such as climbing a tree and riding a bike. If there was any chance I might get hurt, it was off limits.

He was only trying to protect me, but as hard as he tried, it wasn’t enough. I still skinned my knees and suffered hurts and bruises he never saw. They were hidden deep inside as family secrets until years later.

Because of daddy’s protectiveness, I missed seeing the world from atop a tree while sneaking a peek of a mother bird feeding her young. The limbs never provided a place to lay and daydream as the clouds floated above. I didn’t experience the cool breeze as the leaves rustled around me. My world was confined to the safe one Daddy created.

A few skinned knees were avoided, but also the joy of childhood activities. I missed the thrill of riding a bike to a friend’s house or racing down a hill with the wind in my face. I was denied the freedom to explore the world outside our four walls. I was a casualty of Daddy’s fears.

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This story was posted on July 30, 2015.