A Letter To My Dad

A Letter To My Dad

A note to the greatest guy I've ever known on his birthday.

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Hi Dad,

Part of me doesn't know how to even begin this letter because there's so much I want to say to you.

It's been over four years since I last saw you, spoke to you, or hugged you, and I can't believe it's been that long. Simultaneously, though, I sometimes feel like you could still be on a business trip and will walk through the garage door in your suit with your briefcase after a long flight from Europe or some other amazing place.

There's so much I wish you were here for. Not just Jack's middle school graduation, my high school career, my college process, high school graduation, and moving into college, but also the little day-to-day moments I loved so much.

I loved sauce-making days because you would put on swim goggles to cut onions, and you would always put me in charge of cutting the green pimiento olives (which most people still tell me have no place in marinara sauce, but they obviously haven't tried it) and would let me help you season the braciole despite much protest that I "did it wrong." You would make a mess of the kitchen in your recipe-less cooking storm and Mom would begrudgingly clean it up. We managed to (after much trial and error and some really bad batches that I won't describe) find an almost-accurate recipe for your sauce since you never left us one. It was always in your head.

I miss you picking me up from school on the last Friday before Christmas to go antipasto shopping at King's. You always made fun of me for smelling the soup (especially the Italian Wedding, how ironic) as soon as we got there, and we would wander around the aisles, making sure we had everything we needed, sometimes picking up a struffoli for Great-Grandma.

You mostly did sports with Jack, but food was something we always bonded over. Some of my best memories with you were spent in the kitchen.

I miss reading Magic Treehouse and Junie B. Jones with you, laughing at your impressions and the voices you created for each of the characters. I'm going to be honest: when I was little, sometimes (most of the time) I rigged the method of how I picked who would read with me at night so it always picked you. I didn't want to hurt Mom's feelings, but I loved reading books with you.

I'm sad you never got to see me play field hockey or become a captain my junior year. The one middle school game you were able to get to around your crazy work schedule I didn't even play in, and I still think about that sometimes.

I made it to Villanova's School of Business, and I don't know if I even would have ended up studying business if it wasn't for you. Part of me feels that if I follow in your footsteps (somewhat) then I'll feel closer to you. I'm really loving it so far. I definitely made the right decision.

I still miss you. So much. Every day I wear my locket with the picture of us from my eighth-grade graduation in it so I feel like you're with me. I hear a Police or Boston song on the radio, or I see a rainbow, and I know you're around. I persuaded mom not to sell your car so that Jack and I would have a chance to drive it; another way to keep you around.

I keep a video of you teaching Jack how to swing a baseball bat on my phone so I make sure I can hear your voice whenever I'm missing you. The idea that I'll forget anything about you terrifies me because a girl should never be afraid to forget her father.

Most of all, I want to thank you:

Thank you for showing me the difference between being liked and being respected.

Thank you for always holding me to a higher standard, and showing me that the only approval that matters is my own (even though your question of "well, are you happy with that?" in response to an accomplishment didn't always go over well with me).

Thank you for showing me how a guy should treat me and for you and Mom giving me a marriage to look up to.

Thank you for teaching me about generosity, being humble, appreciating every moment, and what it means to be a good person.

Thank you for providing for me and for giving me a safe place to grow up and discover myself.

Thank you for being an amazing father and role model for a girl who still has no idea what she's doing most of the time.

I love and miss you more than any words can describe, but I hope that you are in a better place in whatever lies beyond this life, watching Jack and I grow up. I hope we are making you proud because I will always be proud to be your daughter.

Happy Birthday, Dad. I love you.

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To The Dad Who Didn't Want Me, It's Mutual Now

Thank you for leaving me because I am happy.
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Thank you, for leaving me.

Thank you, for leaving me when I was little.

Thank you, for not putting me through the pain of watching you leave.

Thank you, for leaving me with the best mother a daughter could ask for.

I no longer resent you. I no longer feel anger towards you. I wondered for so long who I was. I thought that because I didn't know half of my blood that I was somehow missing something. I thought that who you were defined me. I was wrong. I am my own person. I am strong and capable and you have nothing to do with that. So thank you for leaving me.

In my most vulnerable of times, I struggled with the fact that you didn't want me. You could have watched me grow into the person that I have become, but you didn't. You had a choice to be in my life. I thought that the fact that my own father didn't want me spoke to my own worth. I was wrong. I am so worthy. I am deserving, and you have nothing to do with that. So thank you for leaving me.

You have missed so much. From my first dance to my first day of college, and you'll continue to miss everything. You won't see me graduate, you won't walk me down the aisle, and you won't get to see me follow my dreams. You'll never get that back, but I don't care anymore. What I have been through, and the struggles that I have faced have brought me to where I am today, and I can't complain. I go to a beautiful school, I have the best of friends, I have an amazing family, and that's all I really need.

Whoever you are, I hope you read this. I hope you understand that you have missed out on one of the best opportunities in your life. I could've been your daughter. I could have been your little girl. Now I am neither, nor will I ever be.

So thank you for leaving me because I am happy. I understand my self-worth, and I understand that you don't define me. You have made me stronger. You have helped make me who I am without even knowing it.

So, thank you for leaving me.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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There's Nothing Wrong With Wanting To Be Better Than Your Parents

They've brought you into the world so you can create YOUR own life.

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I grew up in a very traditional household. I had the typical home-making mother and the father with the 9-5 job. I understand that typically sets the basis for future relationships, but in my case, it changed my perspective. As much as I respect my parents, I do not want to be like them. I see myself doing bigger and better things. I consider myself to be highly independent. My career choice is a great indicator of what my future will look like. There's nothing wrong with wanting more for yourself than your parents if anything it shows character.


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A little background information on myself is that I grew up living with my parents and my sister. We didn't really have anyone else besides ourselves. It became lonely, so I was essentially forced to be close to my family, whether I liked it or not. My sister and I shared a room with a bunk bed, so she was constantly in my hair. My sister had naturally become a role model for me. My parents raised me to be an overachiever. I always excelled in academics. My future was pretty much written out for me. They pushed me and I grew up to be the person I am today. I might not have always agreed with their parenting methods, but I knew that deep down they saw my potential.


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Despite my childhood and upbringing, I see things differently than my parents. I grew to realize that in order to have happiness, you don't have to have a white picket fence with children and a partner. I personally believe that you can create your own version of happiness. The underlying pressure from society and our parents to have the life THEY envisioned creates unnecessary stress. As much as you might feel obliged to conform, I highly disagree with that mindset. I'm not alluding that this idea of life is wrong, it just may not fit into my picture.

Love is such a beautiful thing, but it takes two to tango. Being in a relationship requires dedication and an emotional commitment from both partners. In past "flings", I found myself pulling both ends of this metaphorical string tied between the two of us. I had never found that healthy medium. It was always me setting for mediocrity.

In all honesty, I don't know what my future will look like. I've never been in a long-term relationship, so I can't see myself in the white picket fence vision. I believe that focusing on my career is a priority and that everything else is secondary. The idea of settling down when I've barely made a dent in my career is just going to hold me back from my potential. As much as I would love to have someone to do life with, I just haven't found a person worth my time yet. Besides, I have big aspirations, so I tend to intimidate people.

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