Perfect. She was perfect. Beautiful, in her little cornflower blue frilly dress and lacy stockings. Her fiery curls fell loosely over her pale forehead; her tiny freckled nose scrunched up endearingly as she opened her mouth in a yawn. As I gazed at her, she opened her eyes, revealing shining, sparkling eyes of vivid green, framed by long white lashes. She reached chubby arms up to me, silently begging to be held by her father. I picked her up as I would delicate china, suddenly afraid that I would drop her. She wrapped her short arms around my neck and gurgled in my ear. An overpowering wave of love swept over me, making my chest ache. I was only seeing her for the first time, yet I felt that if something happened to her, I could not bring myself to keep on living.
Her emerald eyes met mine, and she cooed softly. “Hi, baby girl,” I whispered.
“Da….” she burbled, and pulled at the collar of my uniform jacket. She stared at my face as one totally entranced, her large, eager eyes never leaving mine. Then I felt a tiny hand curl around my forefinger, and a grin broke out across my face.
My baby. My daughter. I stroked her porcelain cheeks, her plump little arm, her flawless skin. If only she would stay like this forever, I thought. In no time at all, she would grow up and belong to another man. I kissed her rosy lips and laid her down on the downy white blanket. Stay with me, little one. Daddy loves you.