|Taylor Troy, circa 2004|
12 Christmases, 12 Father's Days and 12 of Taylor's 13 birthdays have gone by. Adam had Taylor's birthdate tattooed on the inside of his forearm, for fear that he would forget. The last we heard was that she was somewhere in Northern NSW. The photo above was received anonymously, when Taylor was about six. We know that it is her, she looks like her daddy, although we think the background has been photoshopped.
Over the years Adam has fallen off the wagon, drinking and using drugs. I think this became his escape for a while. Escape the pain of missing his gorgeous daughter, escape the feelings of regret for wrong choices, escape the fear of what may come. Numb the pain.
But ironically the one thing that sustains Adam's will to go on living is the hope that one day he will see his daughter again. He has been clean and sober for nearly five years. He is amazing. I don't know if I would have the strength that he has shown, if I were in his shoes. I am so proud to call him my brother.
Adam may not have been capable of managing weekend or school holiday visits with Taylor. But he deserved the right to be a part of her life. He would not have been a danger to her in any way. He would be a great dad. Taylor is my parent's only granddaughter (I've got boys and my younger brother is yet to reproduce!). They deserved the right to be a part of her life too. And oh, what I would give to spend time with my beautiful niece.
It is difficult to find a minor, especially when she is with someone who doesn't want her to be found. The court system isn't very helpful in situations like this. There are a surprising number of dad's (and mum's) in situations like Adam's. Legal fees are a stumbling block, and Adam was denied legal aid. They didn't think he had much chance. But also, he has been afraid to try, afraid to get his hopes up, afraid of the crushing disappointment should his efforts be in vain.
One of the hardest things is not knowing what her life is like. Is she safe? Is she happy? Has she been well cared for and well loved by the people around her? What has she been told about her paternal family? One can only guess. It saddens me to know that Taylor has missed out on so much time with her dad and years as a part of our family. We are far from perfect, but we are good people. My parents are kind and caring. They are fabulous grandparents to my boys. Taylor would love them too, given the chance to know them. I'm trying to find her, to give her that chance.
Do you know Taylor? Does her photo look familar? If so, please tell her that she has a family who want so very much to see her. Direct her to my blog, so she can see us and know that she is missed.
If you care to, please feel free to share a link to this page with those in your network. We would greatly appreciate your help. Thank you. x