Feelings matter more than facts.
Emotions are at the core of our humanity. It is human nature to react to our emotions before we consider the facts, and then reconcile that reaction later.
My 19yo daughter is working her tail off as a full-time nanny this summer. She’s also taking babysitting jobs on the weekends. While I love this fantastic form of birth control for her, it can be exhausting work.
Sometimes it can even be a little frightening. The other night, as the clock neared 10pm, she reached out and told me that for whatever reason, she was feeling scared for herself and the sleeping kids. “I know it’s not true, but sometimes it kinda feels like I’m in a horror movie!”
Certainly makes sense; she’s seen the original “Halloween” several times with me (it’s a classic), and that movie has haunted babysitters ever since it came out back in 1978. What struck me on this night, however, was my daughter reaching out to me for comfort. She was afraid, and she wanted to hear (or read through text) my reassuring voice.
What she didn’t really want to hear were the facts. I told her the fact that a burglary, or home invasion, would be incredibly rare in that neighborhood. I told her the fact that the appearance of a serial killer who cannot be killed himself, especially one wearing a whitened-out a William Shatner mask, would be rarer still.
My daughter knew the facts, though; what she wanted was a feeling. She wanted to feel my voice, which still represents a small, but tangible measure of security in her world. That’s the power of relationship, especially one as important as a father and daughter.
Peace begins with pause,