With all that has gone on in my life, I can say that, unequivocally, my father has been there for me. Without fail, my dad has loved me. And always…. *always*, my daddy is the man I compare all other men to.
Several years back, he gave me a book titled “A Daughter Needs a Dad” for my birthday. It was full of little quotes about why a daughter needs a dad (as the title would so distinctly imply). For Fathers Day, that same year, I took some of my favorite quotes and pictures, and made them into a scrapbook. That was very special for me, and for him.
My dad’s time is coming to a close. I don’t know how slowly, or how quickly. But it is coming, nonetheless. It is the things that nightmares are made of. I wake up crying at the thought of losing him. He has been the center of my universe for as much of my life as I can remember. Everything good that I am, he helped to instill into me. So the thought of him being gone is unfathomable.
I never hesitate to tell him why he is so special to me. I never hesitate to tell him why he is so important. I don’t believe in unsaid things. And I don’t believe in only making time for someone when they are gone. I make time for him – even if it just a phone call, or a trip to the store.
There are times, in my dad’s grumpy old age, when he isn’t behaving the way he taught me to be. It’s funny. At those times, I very firmly bring him to attention. “Dad… you know better. That isn’t how you taught me to behave and I expect the same of you.” He will snap out of it when I ask him to be a better man than that. It’s cute.
So, here are a few quotes that I have either made up, or have seen in the book he gave me:
A daughter needs a dad…
- to remind her why she deserves to be loved.
- to tell her that she can do it. Whatever “it” is.
- to believe in her when she doesn’t believe in herself.
- to teach her to expect more from the people in her life.
- so she knows what “unconditional” means.
- to show her that a real man can be gentle.
- to give her an example of imperfection; an imperfection that still loves completely.
- to love her children, no matter when she has them.
- to teach her forgiveness.
- to remind her not to be so hard on herself.
My daddy is the example of good things in my life. He is gracious and grateful. He is intelligent, but doesn’t use that to make others feel bad about themselves. All the good things about me came from my dad. I am so exceedingly grateful for him.
Today, I celebrate my daddy. If I can repay him, with any amount, of what he’s given me, then I know that he knows how much I love him.