So you’ve probably seen it on Facebook. The newest challenge, game, or whatever you want to call it is one where you share a photo of each of your parents, and then you ask your friends which one you look more like. I wanted to play. I wanted to participate. But it just wasn’t that simple for me.
It wasn’t just the fact that every time I saw a picture of my mom it pricked my still-grieving heart. Heck, every time I looked at my sisters I saw my mom’s face anyhow, so it wasn’t salt in a left-behind daughter’s wound. Not really.
The thing is I love my daddy. I love him so very much, but the hard fact is he didn’t contribute to my gene pool. He loves me with an unconditional love, and most days I forget the fact that he hasn’t always been around. His support and the huge impact he had on my formative years make me sweep under the rug of my memory that he in fact didn’t enter my life until I was seven years old. He’s my daddy, for sure, but if you want to get technical you can’t really say I have his eyes. You just can’t.
A part of me considered placing a photo of my biological father on my newsfeed alongside my mom, to see just which genetic contributor I more favored, but I didn’t even have a photo of him on my phone to share. There wasn’t one buried in the ten years of Facebook photos archived in the albums, and I couldn’t even locate one on my picture app where I kept digitalized precious memories of my life. If it were up to apps, social media, or my camera roll, there would be no evidence of this man who in all actuality gave me life. 50% of it anyway.
I could have dug something out of my baby book to screen shot if I really wanted to play along, but in the end I couldn’t put him in the place of the man who raised me. I couldn’t hurt my daddy that way. Even though he doesn’t know a Facebook from a notebook.
I thought about when I was younger and people would see me with my family. On multiple occasions, which caused my mom much happy laughter, people who didn’t know us intimately would comment how I looked more like my dad than my mom. As I thought of that memory I realized I could do the challenge anyway. It didn’t matter that my dad wasn’t tied to me by blood. He was connected to me on a heart level, and I was honored if I took after him in any kind of way.
So what do you think? Do I look more like my mom, or my (adopted) daddy?