Miami Heat legend Dwyane Wade has always been an incredible father, but his love and support of his daughter Zaya have truly been something to behold. The younger Wade came out as transgender early in 2020 and has since then seen incredible support as well as hurtful criticism from online trolls.
Dwyane Wade is paying tribute to his daughter Zaya.
The NBA player, 38, shared a pair of photos featuring his 13-year-old, posting a heartfelt quote about unconditional love in the caption meant for her. Back in February, Wade and wife Gabrielle Union introduced the world to Zaya when their child came out as transgender.
“Unconditional love, simply put, is love without strings attached. It’s love you offer freely,” reads the quote shared by Wade. “You don’t base it on what someone does for you in return. You simply love them and want nothing more than their happiness. This type of love, sometimes called compassionate or agape love ??? @zayawade.”
Wade — who shares 2-year-old daughter Kaavia James with Union and is also dad to sons Xavier Zechariah, 7, and Zaire, 18 — previously opened up to PEOPLE in February about supporting and loving his kids so they all will “see their full potential.”
“As I’m raising [Zaya], as I’m raising my kids, you just try to put them in the best situations to be able to succeed in life,” he said at the time. “How I do that, and how me and my wife decide to do that, may be different than another family, but we want them to know there’s always unconditional love, that it will always be support.”
“We’ve got you, no matter what. And we see you,” Wade added. “I see you how you see you.”
While being profiled for the 2020 TIME 100, TIME magazine’s list of the world’s 100 most influential people, in September, Wade and Union discussed encouraging their children to live freely.
“Freedom exists in so many different forms, but we are so blessed to be in a household where we have free children. We have a daughter that is almost 2, that the world has seen, is bound to nothing but whatever is in her heart and on her soul at the moment,” Union said of Kaavia. “And it’s beautiful to watch truly free children.”
“We have another daughter who is 13, who has the freedom to be exactly who she is, who she was born to be, to be her most authentic self,” the Bring It On actress shared of stepdaughter Zaya. “She doesn’t ask permission to exist. It’s wildly inspiring.”
“To echo my wife, I’m inspired by our kids,” Wade added. “The way they look at us, the way they look to us, for leadership and guidance, for their moments of bravery.”