A Letter To The Man Who Has My Heart

To The Man Who Will Always Hold My Heart

A girl's first true love is her father.

Laken Pritchard

Just like mom, I've had this article in the making for quite a while now, but wasn't quite sure when I was going to submit it. Now that I'm just a few days away from turning 20, I decided that it is the perfect time to remind you just how much you mean to me--over the past 20 years and the many more that will follow.

We've always said how even though I look more like mom, I have every bit of your personality. I have the relaxed, go-with-the-flow attitude that you have. It's amusing to watch mom go nuts over just how relaxed we can be sometimes...but it's just how we are. You've taught me that God has a plan and that everything will work out the way that it's supposed to. Maybe it would be better if we weren't as laid back sometimes, but that wouldn't be any fun.

The support you have provided me is immeasurable. Every birthday or father's day post always includes how "I can't thank you enough for supporting me", and it's more than true. You watched me fall in love with horseback riding (not a cheap sport in the slightest), while there were many questions asked, you signed all the checks and showed up to every horse show. You even played "Horse Show Dad" for a couple of weekends. Even when we joked that "Dad shows up to watch me ride for 15 minutes, then goes back home to watch the game", I always knew you cared. But, the moment where I really knew you cared? Watching the video of my 2017 Medal Finals round, hearing you scream "Yes!" and give a fist-pump after I cleared the last jump. I always knew you were proud of me, but that moment was something I'll cherish forever.

College has been somewhat of a whirlwind for me. Going to an expensive, private university, transferring, packing up all of my things and driving two hours in the opposite direction. Although you didn't show it, I know that the events leading up to transferring were stressful. I know it wasn't only hard on me. You're my dad, of course it's going to be hard watching your daughter struggle with herself. But, you made it very clear that we'd do whatever it took to make sure I got to where I needed to be. I can assure you, without that, I wouldn't have made the progress I have.

This is probably going to be hard to write about, let alone read, so Aunt Susie, Marley, and Mom...get out the tissues.

June 3rd, 2016. One of the worst days of my whole entire life, but also one where I learned a whole lot. Buddy was OUR dog. Max had mom and Marley, but we had Buddy. I remember the many conversations leading up to the last day, but I was never fully prepared--I still wasn't prepared that day (or the weeks after). After our final goodbye, I remember walking up to my room, sobbing uncontrollably. We had been fortunate as a family that I had only a few experiences with death, so I couldn't quite remember everything. This was, obviously, quite different. You walked up the stairs to my room and wrapped me in a hug, crying just as much as I was, and said, "We did the right thing." That was all that needed to be said, and trust me, it made all the difference in the world.

Now, you know I have my wedding planned. You've heard me talk about it nearly a hundred times. Even this past weekend, you witnessed me experiencing a huge dilemma: who will be my flower girl and ring bearer? But, even with everything planned out, nothing is going to prepare me when that day finally comes. Mom has always said she prayed for Marley and me to marry men that were just like you. Marley obviously coming pretty close, but I'm still waiting. There's a reason for that, though. While God may be working hard on the man I'm supposed to be with, I know damn well you won't give me away to just anybody. I know that I will love the man I marry unconditionally; however, you will always be the man that I loved first, and I will forever be your little girl.

You've taught me how to go with the flow, how to be hard-headed, how to love my family and God, and how to properly root for the Tar Heels.

876 words will never do you justice, dad. You're the reason I am the person I am today--I have your personality to prove it. The memories and laughs we've shared will be something that I cherish forever.

You said at Marley's wedding that you hoped she found someone that loves her just as much as you do, and that Larson came "pretty dang close." I'll have you know that no one will ever love you as much as mom, Marley, and I do. No one will ever come close.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Health and Wellness

This Survey Shows How Quarantine And Drinking Relate, And I Can't Say I'm Surprised

"5 o'clock somewhere" is more of a guideline now than ever.

As it stands, and my friends and I are finally 21. We're extremely excited to be able to go out to bars and "get lit" as the kids say, but due to the pandemic, all of our plans have been put on hold. We'd rather wait and go when it's safe than risk spreading the infection and hurting our loved ones. So, we've all been quarantining apart, getting on the occasional wine zoom call. This made me wonder if anyone else our age were doing the same thing.

Then, I discovered this survey: We Surveyed Millennials And Gen Z About Their Quarantine Drinking Habits — Cheers. Here are 3 things that I discovered through the survey results.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

17 Things To Make You Feel GOOD This Week

Because some purchases are just necessary.

Y'all, we're struggling. You don't even have to tell me, I know. What a mess we're all in, right? This year is not going how we planned and the world has turned into one giant struggle bus. I guess you could be super philosophical about everything happening for a reason, but sometimes life is just hard.

There are plenty of ways to bring yourself out of whatever rut you're in. You could go for a run, have a snack, or read a book. Or, if you're really looking for an adrenaline rush, go shopping. This is obviously not going to solve the world's problems with one swift click of the "checkout" button, but hey, it may just give you the little boost you need today.

Keep Reading... Show less

- Blissfully unaware that butt-care beyond squats was even something I should be considering in my self-care routine, I tried one of Bawdy Beauty's butt masks for the first time a month ago.

- I've never really given my butt a second though till I took a look at improvements that could be made with the mask — if one of the hydrating, firming, detoxifying, or brightening masks in the kit I received could either smooth out cellulite or tone my skin a bit more, I wasn't going to complain.

- Each Bawdy Beauty sheet mask comes in an individually-packaged sheet, soaked with a serum I massaged into my skin after removing said sheet. The clay butt mask comes in a convenient stick format I simply draw on to my skin and leave to set for about 10 minutes before hopping into the shower.

- I set a goal of committing myself to butt-care every day for one month. Between the regular use of sheet masks, clay masks, and their CBD Butt Balm in between, I didn't have many expectations.

- I thought the whole concept may just be a gimmick, but my butt has never looked so toned in my life, and the cellulite I had is almost completely gone. I wear one every single day when I get the chance.

I'm incredibly skeptical when it comes to marketing ploys and gimmicks in the beauty world. I'll be the first cynic to try out the latest serum on the market every influencer is raving about just to negate every grandiose claim it makes.

Keep Reading... Show less

Friends, you don't have to be quarantined to use a personal massager, you know? Because, sure, quarantine made for a lot of extra quality time with yourself, but no matter what phase of the reopening process you're in, it's normal and actually healthy to take care of your sexual needs on your own.

Keep Reading... Show less

5 Books I Didn't Realize Are About Gay Women

If you read primarily LGBTQ fiction, then this list might help to expand your TBR list.

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto from Pexels

Frequent readers of LGBTQ fiction might feel like they're reading the same book over and over again, with few exceptions.

Most of these books were on my TBR list for months and I didn't realize they were about gay women until I was reading them, hopefully, this list of books can interest you in expanding your reading material and seeking out different stories.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

Feel A Lil' Better: Because Those Hormones Aren't Gonna Balance Themselves

Your weekly wellness boost from Odyssey.

No matter how good (or bad) you'd describe your health, one thing is for sure: a little boost is ALWAYS a good idea. Whether that's reading a new, motivating book, or listening to a song that speaks to your soul, there are plenty of resources to help your health thrive on any given day.

It's common knowledge that your hormones impact practically every aspect of your body. Weight gain, acne, mental health... it's all related to your hormonal health. If your life is treating your body like the superstar it is, your endocrine glands should produce the perfect amount of each hormone to keep you running like a well-oiled machine. This is a nice thought, sure. In our current society, even the most balanced person you know may be missing an important aspect of respecting their body. Things like sleep, stress, diet, exercise, and a busy pace of life can throw hormones off balance and negatively impact your general wellbeing. Sometimes these imbalances are noticed right away, while other times they can be smaller — annoying, but not as obvious.

Keep Reading... Show less

One of the biggest discomforts I initially had with the stay-at-home order was feeling trapped and isolated from what was going on outside the walls of my house. Add that to living in a massive city, where social distancing is nearly impossible when doing something as simple as walking down the street.

Keep Reading... Show less

There is no such thing as a defined beauty industry. For those who believe so, it's time to open your eyes and look around you. Chilling in LA, Beauty Beez has been marketing the beauty industry towards people of color. Not to mention, Beauty Beez is a Black-owned beauty store. They have their own beauty bar that provides threading, waxing, facials, and braiding!

With the client at the center of the experience, our diverse group of professional and knowledgeable beauty experts are able to effectively educate and assist, while you explore. - Beauty Beez

You bet their fabulous mission statement was created by a female entrepreneur. Her name is Brittney Ogike and she is a mompreneur with a career in sports management. Beauty Beez came to life through mere observation or the lack of.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments