“I Love You Daddy”

by Briana Learnihan

Ciaran O’Fearaigh has been in an American jail in Denver, Colorado, for Five Hundred and Forty days, yet has not been charged with a crime. Throughout his ordeal, Ciaran has had only one simple wish, to be at home with his American wife, Heaven, and three-year-old daughter, Fiona. The closest contact are their hands over-lapping on the cold prison glass that keeps them apart. The jail cell window is so thick it’s impossible to hear a sound through it. How unbelievably difficult it is to see Heaven and little Fiona talking to Ciaran using the awkward telephone headset attached to the visitor’s wall. As Fiona scribbles in her little note pad, she holds it up against the window saying, “I love you, Daddy” into the heavy handset. This small family still somehow manages to laugh out-loud and joke around, but Ciaran is finding it so much harder to be optimistic as the time passes with no official decision in sight.

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