Daddy’s Girl

It was a moment of grace on a Sunday afternoon.  My husband, Jim, and I were walking through the crowd into a Creighton U basketball game.  In the middle of the throng on the sidewalk ahead of us, we spotted a little girl, about 5 years old, wearing a spectacular fluffy ballet tutu in game day colors, blue and white. Her special skirt bounced with her as she walked proudly along next to her father.  I smiled at the difference in their sizes, her father a huge man, tall and beefy, carefully holding her miniature hand in his.

I saw that in his other hand he carefully held a tiny canvas bag—and out of the top of it peeked a Barbie doll.  I loved the image of this large man carrying his daughter’s doll, unselfconscious in his desire to keep her happy.

As we passed them I complimented her on her skirt.  They both smiled and she thanked me.  “My mom made it for me to wear to the games,” she said proudly twirling in it.  Her father looked down at her with such love then reached his hand down to reconnect with her and I saw it. The fingernails on his massive hand were painted a bright pink.

This was truly a father, a dad in all respects, whose love of his daughter gave him the freedom to not only allow his daughter to paint his nails, but to wear them publicly with pride and happiness or to forget he even had them done.  Father and daughter joined hands again, their nails matching in color and their joy in each other, clear.

Photo by, Flickr Creative Commons

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Maureen McCann Waldron
Maureen McCann Waldron graduated from Creighton University with a degree in journalism and then spent 22 years in corporate public relations. After receiving her master’s degree in Christian spirituality from Creighton, she joined Andy Alexander, SJ, in Creighton’s Collaborative Ministry Office.


  1. Lovely story. I was blessed to have unconditional love from my Dad who was my rock (still is) who died in 2003. He thankfully was well aware that “I treasured him” and referred to me once as his “Guardian Angel”. How lucky was I!

  2. Such a sweet story, I wish all daughters had dads that loved them so much. Some girls just have to know that their Father in Heaven loves them unconditionally.

  3. Love this image. I’ve never gone that far–painted nails, that is– but I have had a tea party during the Super Bowl. 🙂


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