You taught me more than you may know.
Every time you held me when I cried. Every time you sat in the audience clapping at whatever event I was performing in, regardless of how insignificant. Every time you took me out on "Daddy-Daughter Dates."
Every time you took me to see a movie or watch a show with me that, let's be honest, you had no real interest in. Every time you took my car to get serviced or put gas in it for me. Every time you called me just to see how I was doing.
Every time you joked around with me and made me laugh. Every time you did the little things that meant so much more than you could have ever imagined, you were setting a standard for how I should be treated.
Without these meaningful and heartwarming gestures, I may have never known what it was like to be treated like a princess.
You taught me how I should be treated in ALL other relationships.
Every time you sent flowers to mom while she was at work. Every time you took her out on date nights or surprised her with weekend trips. Every time you called her to see how her day went or FaceTimed her while you were away. Every time you finished her "honey-do list" without complaint or fixed something around the house without being asked.
Every time you cuddled with her on the couch while we watched movies or called her when "y'all's song" came on. Every time you held her hand, hugged her or kissed her.
Every time you treated my mom with the most respect and love that you could, you were teaching me how a woman should be treated by a man.
You were teaching me what it looks like for a man to love a woman wholeheartedly.
Every time you got up before the sun came out and went to work and worked until it was dark again. Every time you valued hard work and education over laziness. Every time you helped out another person from the kindness of your heart. Every time you stopped to pick something up out of the road or fixed something you didn't have too just because you would "hate for someone else's daughter or wife to get hurt because of it".
Every time you handled a situation with patience and kindness instead of anger and hate.
Every time you judged another human being by their actions and intentions instead of their outward appearance. Every time you did these little things, you were teaching me what it's like to have morals, good character, and a kind heart. You were teaching me what a real man does.
You were teaching me how to treat others and how someone else should treat others.
You taught me how to be treated and you were setting the standard.
Because you are the standard.
I love you, daddy.