Anna Gragert
November 12, 2015 2:52 pm

Raising a human being is one difficult job — some would say it’s the most difficult job. That would explain why one heartfelt letter is making all the hardworking parents out there feel less alone.

On Tuesday, a man named Richard Johnson posted a message on the Life of Dad Facebook page. It reads, “My name is Richard Johnson, and I’m a single father to a beautiful little girl named Persephone. Her mother left about a month after she was born. We still don’t know exactly why, but we suspect postpartum depression played a part. In the first few weeks of it being just her and me, I stumbled upon your page by accident. I was so nervous and scared about being a father in general, but now I was a single father and had to fulfill two roles. I wasn’t sure I could do it.”

Is your heart bursting already? Just wait for it.

“I had read every ‘new parent’ book I could find and clocked in over 1000 hours in YouTube videos from everything to braiding hair and painting nails to theories on how to deal with common parental issues,” Johnson explains. He then mentions that the Life of Dad page provided him with hope. Through this community, he learned that he’s not alone as a single father and that the obstacles he faces are universal.

The devoted dad ends this heartwarming letter by stating, “We’re both very happy now and continue to grow together everyday. She’s now 10 months, and I now get asked by my friends for parenting advice constantly. We’ve come a long way, my daughter and me, and we definitely owe part of that to this page and the people within it. So from both of us, we wanted to thank you. ”

To accompany this message, Johnson posted a photo of himself and his adorable little girl. Honestly, this one photograph is going to provide us with happiness for days to come.

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And it turns out that we’re not the only ones who feel this way. After Johnson’s letter was met with a sea of positive comments, he posted a follow-up message to elaborate on his situation:

“I come from a family of divorce and was [raised] by a single mother. When my father left when I was 6 I didn’t know I wouldn’t see or hear from him again until I was 21. So being that I never had a father it was truly frightening to become one. Even more so when I was going to do it alone. I didn’t have time to be worried though because that beautiful little girl needed a parent who could be her rock and would love her to pieces. In my mind there was no other option,” the dad writes.

“The days have been rough and at times I wasn’t sure I could make it another day. I spent more than a few nights holding my little girl as she slept weeping because I wasn’t sure I was going to be a good enough father for her. One night in particular was the night she first crawled. She came to me and laid her tiny little hand on my cheek and stared into my eyes. I took it as ‘Come on Daddy, we have a lot to do.’ So I told her no more crying for either of us and we were going to fight to be happy.”

Since it was uploaded on the 10th of November, the Facebook post has 633 shares and over 17,000 likes. In response to Richard’s inspiring, heart-crushing message, commenters have shared their own parenting struggles and experiences.

“Wow!! What a heartwarming post. You’re doing a great job with that little girl. My Dad was my very best friend up until the day I lost him 5 months ago. Keep making those memories,” Holly Barker wrote. Chris Bowen added, “Thank you for sharing. My wife passed away last December 21st. My 5 yr old son, Kai and myself are working through our new normal. I never envisioned raising a son on my own starting at 4 yrs old.”

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For all the parents, single parents, and loving guardians out there: this is a reminder that you are never alone.

[Images via Facebook]

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