Friday, June 17, 2011

My Daddy

Today's post is going to be a bit emotional for me. Father's Day is just around the corner and I thought what should I write about today...

Then I decided since I dedicated yesterday's post to my husband that I should do a tribute to the man I call my daddy.

This story can be long (but I will give the short version) and I am sure there are plenty of people who can relate to it.

First let me introduce you to my "dad".

I say "dad", because I never knew him. In my eyes he was the sperm donor.
This picture was taken the first night I ever met him when I was 21 years old.
Notice the stiffness to my body? Yea I wasn't so sure about having him touch me.
I did hug him when I first met him and cried. I even had a few laughs with him over the 4 years he lived after this picture was taken.
He showed back up into my life, because he found out he had 4 years to live.
I know what all of you are thinking. Oh he found me so he could finally get to know me before he died.
It's not that sweet and wonderful. He found me, because he wanted a nurse maid.
First thing he started bothering me about was changing my last name to his.
I informed him right then and there that if I ever legally change my last name it will be to my Daddy's last name.

That's right I said my daddy.

That is the man who raised me since I was 10 years old.

The man who I called out for and asked to see while laying in recovery after my back surgery when I was 12 years old.

The man who was going to give me his blood and who begged my mom to let her adopt me.
He was my hero and I looked up to him.

Even in the end with the rough patches we hit due to his health and my need to be an adult (my mom fought me on this one) he was still there and I still loved him with every ounce of my heart.

He was in the navy when he was married to his first wife. Well Naval Reserves, but still the same thing to me.

He had 4 other children. 2 girls and 2 boys as a matter of fact.

He considered me to be his 5th and his baby girl.

I was a daddy's girl and even though he is no longer here with us I still am.

I was 10 years old when my mom met him and he wasn't like the others.

My mom had dated guys in the past who would "include" me in on stuff, but he didn't just "include" me.

He instantly became a father figure to me, because he cared and he loved me just as much as he cared and loved my mom.

He is a good bit older than my mother, but age is just a number as long as that person treats you right.

He would be the same age as my grandfather in October of this year if he was still with us today.

He was a hard worker and would get up at 3 am every morning to get ready for work. He was always out the door by 3:30 after having a cup of coffee with my mom.

I never seen him when he would leave for work in the morning, but he would be home waiting for me in the evening after I got out from school.

This is the man who stood by my side holding my arm and helped me walk up the steps into our home the night I got to leave the hospital after my surgery.

This is the man who even gave up his comfy recliner so I could have a place to sit without being in pain.

Nothing was too heavy for him to lift for me when I wanted to wrap that special Christmas gift for my mom, but couldn't even lift on it a little due to the weight.

He taught me how to be a hard worker and how to work for what I get. You earn your not given.

He taught me how to take care of myself and how to be a strong kick boxer.

He praised my writings, drawings and music. Anything I was interested in at the time he took the time to listen to me talk about it.

He loved to listen to me sing even though I hated singing in front of people.

He loved to sit and watch me draw even if it was just a small doodle.

He would let me cry on his shoulder when I was sad.

He would smile and share my happiness when I was happy.

He always enjoyed sharing my accomplishments.

He was and still is my daddy.

I love him so much.

Miss him even more.

Letter to Daddy

Dear Daddy,
I wanted to see you one last time and was so ready to, but then I heard the news.
I never even got to tell you good bye or that I was sorry for everything that had happened.
I know it wasn't anyone's fault. Not yours and not mine. You didn't mean what you said.
It was your bad health talking. I still swear I saw you that night I was laying in my hospital bed. Just a few hours after my first son's birth.
You smiled at me and told me good job. You told me how proud you were of me.
Maybe it was just my brain trying to comfort me and give me closure.
I always thought you would be there when I had my first child.
There to help us celebrate him coming into the world.
Thought you would have been there to be called grandpa.
Him come beg his grandpa to share a cookie from his forbidden cookie stash.
My life has been through some ups and downs since the day I was born and I was truly blessed to have you come into it.
You were there for me when no one else was.
You always spoiled me and let me be a kid when my mom wanted to hold me back.
From offering to buy me a home to offering to pay for me to go to college.
I still think about all of that every day of my life.
Maybe if I listened to your encouragement more and the negative comments from others less I would have made more of myself.
But then I stop and think...
If I was different would I have met my husband and had the family I have now?
Would I be the person I am today. Strong, hard headed and loved.
I love you and miss you so much daddy.
I really wish you were here for one more day so I could tell you this to your face.
Taking flowers out to your grave to mark that someone is lying there isn't the same as sitting in the middle of your shop floor talking to you about what we want to do to that old junk car in the back.
All of the ideas we had and shared. It can never be replaced by anyone.
I haven't even really laid a hand on a car to really "help" work on one since the last time I got under the hood with you.
It's not the same to me. Nothing is the same to me.
My poetry writing has turned into blogging my feelings and thoughts for the day.
My art has turned to taking photos of my kids and a stronger found passion in photography.
I still pride myself in every accomplishment big or small that I make.
You taught your daughter well.

With all of my heart,
Daddy's Girl

Yes I was and always will be a Daddy's Girl.
I never was given anything that I didn't earn first.
I earned my allowance and was rewarded big Birthday and Christmas gifts, because of how hard of a worker I was at home and outside of our home.
My daddy taught me good values and I thank him every day for that.

So in honor of his memory I am dedicating today's blog post to him.
Thank you for stopping by and reading my thoughts and memories of a wonderful man.
A man who I was truly blessed to have come into my life.

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