Everyday, without fail, Chastity Patterson texts her dad. Following his death, she has used the format as way of coping.
What she never expected to see was a reply to the messages.
This very thing happened recently after Chastity found an unlikely responder on the opposite side of a poignant text which detailed her health and education among other subjects.
She ended the message: “I just wanted to say I love you and I really do miss you.”
The reply came: “Hi sweetheart, I am not your father, but I have been getting all your messages for the past 4 years.”
Brad, who had been receiving Chastity’s grievances, said he looks forward to her daily updates and even told her a bit about his own life, particularly how his daughter passed away in August 2014. Her messages, he says, have ‘kept him alive.’
He elaborated: “When you text me I know it’s a message from God. I’m sorry you lost someone so close to you, but I have listened to you over the years and I have watched you grow and go through more than anyone.
“I have wanted to text you back for years, but I didn’t want to break your heart. You are an extraordinary woman and I wish my daughter would have become the woman you are, thank you for your everyday updates, you remind me that there is a God and it wasn’t his fault that my little girl is gone.
“He gave me you, my little angel and I knew this day was coming. Everything will be okay.”
Brad concluded: “I’m sorry you have to go through this, but if it makes it any better, I am very proud of you!” He signed off: “Take care and I look forward to your updates tomorrow.”
Chastity, from Arkansas, uploaded the screenshots of the conversation, saying: “I text my dad everyday to let him know how my day goes, for the past Four years! Today was my sign that everything is okay and I can let him rest!”
The post has received over 220,000 shares and 100,000 reactions since Chastity shared the images on Facebook.
It just goes to show how even though we may feel completely alone in our mourning, there is nothing quite so universal as loss. The harrowing experiences we seem to battle alone is happening or has happened to every human being. And together we thrive.