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Letter to Amy

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My Dearest Daughter,

Today you turn sixteen.  I can’t believe how beautiful you look.  You are everything a man could want in a daughter.  As I look back on my life, at all the things I’ve accomplished, you are what I am most proud of.  My daughter, my dearest Amy.

Your mother is taking hundreds of pictures, but I can already tell how they’ll turn out.  In each one you’re standing tall, head up and eyes bright.  You think you’re ready to take on anything the world can throw at you, and maybe you’re right.  I know that the years to come will dent and tarnish that perfect self-confidence, but they won’t break you.  Nothing will.

Today, as I write this, you’re old enough to know the truth.  But I would not spoil this day for anything, nor the time we still have together.  I recently found out that I’m dying;  right now they can’t tell me if I have a few months or a few years.  That’s more than enough for you to have to deal with now.  I’ll give this letter to my lawyer with instructions to deliver it to you five years from the date of my death.  Forgive me, sweetheart, for not telling you in person what I’m about to say here.  I just can’t.

Your mother and I originally wanted a large family.  We didn’t want to wait, we started trying the day we were married.  After a couple of years, we checked with the doctors – they told us the problem was mine.  It wasn’t outright impossible that I could sire a child, but it was very, very unlikely.

So we decided to adopt.  But we weren’t considered ideal prospects, and even if we had been, it would have taken years.  It was a miracle when your mother got pregnant after all.  “Overjoyed” doesn’t even come close to how we felt.

Back then they were just starting to let fathers into the delivery room.  I was there for your birth.  They put you into my arms, and I thanked God for my perfect little girl.

Later, the doctor took me back into his office and explained that a man with my blood type couldn’t sire a child with yours.  I told him that it didn’t matter.  It doesn’t matter.  I never asked your mother, never gave her the slightest indication that I knew.  But knowing the other half of your genetic heritage may have been necessary someday, for medical reasons if for nothing else.  So later I had some checking done.

Your biological father’s name is Joe Dawson.  He’s a good man, a Watcher like your mother is, and he’s one of the best.  I’m glad he’s the one she chose.  I think he knows about you;  if he does, and he’s still alive when you read this, I’m sure he wants to meet you.  That’s up to you, of course, but think about it.

Remember, nothing you decide will change what we have.  You are my daughter in truth, beyond little quibbles about genetics.  As you read this now, I want you to know that.  Death is no barrier to my love for you – how can anything less stand against it?

Your loving Father