I’m a daddy’s girl. My dad raised me since I was 9 months old. I was his first baby. Bouncing strawberry blonde spiral curls and a spunky attitude to boot. He put everything he had into raising me. It’s not easy for a single father. Working night shift just so he could spend the days with me, he made a lot of sacrifices for me. Losing sleep, working hard, and giving up a few dreams — like riding a Harley, taking a few vacations, and the like.
Over the years, I have seen the things my father has sacrificed for not only me, but my sisters and brothers as they arrived as well. Working two jobs, sometimes three; spending money likes it’s nothing, taking vacations to places I’m sure he would have probably never gone if he didn’t have kids, watching chick flicks just to make us happy, sacrificing sleep to see a play or a softball game. He’s given so much to all of us kids. He’s inspired me. He’s given my the will to push on some days. When things get really tough for me, I think to myself, “If my dad can do it, I can too.” It’s what helps me keep going.
My dad isn’t a really sentimental type of person, and maybe that’s where I get my edges from. He’s taught me a lot through the years. In fact some of the most valuable things he’s taught me within the past five years that I can vividly remember are:
How to install a sprinkler system.
How to efficiently manage my finances.
How to put out a fire, effectively.
How to stay organized.
How to not care what others think about you.
How to use a firearm.
My dad has taught me many other good things in life. Like how to properly mount lights on your roof, how to laugh when everything feels dark and gray, how to forgive and not hold grudges, how to stick to my guns. I could go on and on when it comes to all the different ways my dad has made me a better person. He’s helped me shrug off jerky loser friends, given me advice on when to break up with the loser ex boyfriends, and showed me the importance of spending time with family.
My dad may be a lot of things. Crazy, insane, over-the-top, for starters. But he’s the driving force behind most of my decisions. My decisions to go back to school, to get a better job, and to start really planning for the future. Even with 8 kids and 2 dogs in the house on a daily basis, my dad has given me everything that I need for a good life. I may not have diamonds on my neck and wrists, I don’t drive a Ferrari or Porsche, and I surely don’t live on “daddy’s money.” But he’s given me every possible thing that he could. He gave all of us kids everything he could over the years.
Now, 22 years later, here I stand. On the verge of graduating college, almost halfway through my internship at an Orthopedics Office, ready to start spreading my wings to fly out of the nest that he’s made over the years for me. He’s given up so many things for all of the kids over the years. I don’t get to tell him every day how much I love him or that he means the world to me. No one makes me laugh, inspires or guides me like does. He’s one of my best friends.
I’m extremely lucky to have a father like him. Kind, understanding, and would move the sky if I asked him to. He’s stood behind me when everyone else has left. He’s pushed me to be a better person, no matter how much I hated it. My dad has taught me to do the right thing, even when it’s not the most popular thing to do. He’s showed me to believe in my dreams, dig deeper, and be the best that I can.
I once heard a quote:
Anyone can be a father, but it takes a special person to be a dad.
My dad is my hero. When I get married, I hope the guy I am fortunate to marry is even half the man that he is. I know no one could ever compare. No matter how old I am, no matter how far I may be, no matter where I am in this world, I will always be his little girl. I love you with everything that I am, Dad. I love you, Daddy. ❤