Kelly Clarkson’s gut wrenching performance of Piece by Piece on American Idol last week left everyone in tears as she pulled through the song with everything she had. Her heart was left on the stage as she dove into her emotions from the pile of her childhood memories. Kelly, known for her authenticity and vulnerability, gave us all a glimpse of the devastation of being abandoned by her father at the tender age of six years old. Originally written while pregnant with her daughter River, this beautiful song shows the heart of a fatherless daughter finding a love [her husband] that she had longed for forever. Now pregnant with a son, the songstress challenges her childhood and vows that she’ll never leave her children like her father left her.
See Kelly’s American Idol performance here:
Video courtesy of American Idol/YouTube.
As a fatherless child myself, my heart melted with Kelly’s, as I’m sure yours did too. To see the pained look in her eyes and the tears rolling down her face brought back memories of when my father left me at the age of two years old. As I reveal in my book, Invisible Dad, growing up without a father left me with an overwhelming amount of anger and depression. I had a disadvantage before I even I had a good start in life. I questioned how he could leave, and why was I not enough for him to stay. Every day my father was a gone, a piece of my heart crumbled. Challenged with life and circumstances, my broken heart would yearn for love, but I continued to be content with discontentment.
Like most fatherless daughters, we have taught ourselves to guard our hearts. Fathers are protectors, but if your father is absent, what do you do then? The effects of being unwanted by one that shares your same DNA weighs heavy on your mind and casts your heart into a burning fire. This enduring pain reaches down to the depths of your soul with the side effects imposing underlying feelings towards every man you meet. A father is a part of your foundation to build upon, so when he is gone, you are left treading on unstable ground trying to regain a sense of balance. A broken heart can leave an open wound, but a broken mind can leave a permanent scar.
To move past the devastation, often as fatherless daughters, we lose ourselves trying to give out of our pain. Whether your father re-enters your life or remains absent, one thing remains the same amongst all fatherless daughters, the pain of abandonment is a heavy load to bear. As Kelly beautifully sings, piece by piece our faith can be restored. By challenging the view of your past, you can alternatively change the view your future – making it a beautiful picture of love, faith, and healed wounds. What’s the answer? Redemption, Forgiveness and Restoration. You’ll be able to be honest concerning your past, but also release the heavy load and damaging emotions that hinder you from reaching your greatest potential. By traveling these journeys, you’ll begin to see that “a man can be kind and a father could stay.”