I am a daddy's girl and I am unashamed to admit it. My earliest memories consist of him coming in to tuck me in at night. His final words to me were always "You're a sweet girl", to which I always replied, "You are a good daddy." I always drifted off to sleep knowing that I was cherished by a man who would give his life to know that I was safe and loved.
My school had a father/daughter dance when I was little where we would dance the box-step and the two-step with our dads to show off the skills we had learned in our dance class. I was always so proud to be dancing with my handsome daddy. My grandmother would buy me a new Ruth Original dress, and my mother would put sausage curls in my hair and carefully turn down my lace trimmed socks. I cannot remember ever feeling more beautiful than I did on the dance floor, my white gloved hand held gently in my daddy's.
My daddy modeled responsibility and hard work in his orthodontic practice. I have never met a patient of his that didn't have fond memories of going to his office and who didn't still feel self confidence in the beautiful smile my father's perfectionism in his craft help them achieve. I try to give the same attention and positive regard to my psychotherapy clients as I saw my daddy give to his patients.
I have never met anyone who can compare to my daddy in his love of playing. I used to be convinced that he was part Santa Claus part Peter Pan. He would have truckloads of pinestraw brought in to cover the hill in our back yard so we could sled down the hill in our plastic sleds, rig up zip lines from trees at our lake house so we could fly out over the water, and run the sprinkler at night when the temperature was to go below freezing so that we could wake to trees covered with ice in our very own "winter wonderland."
His generosity surpasses anything I have ever witnessed. Everyone knows that you never express a desire for something that he owns or that you saw in a store or on television without expecting the UPS man to bring you one as soon as he can manage.
His sense of humor and his trickery are legend. I was with him when he met a plane carrying his friend at the airport dressed in full Raggedy Andy regalia, and have been present when his alarm clock to wake a friend was a handfull of firecrackers in a five gallon bucket!
When he became a grandfather he took things to a whole new level. My children experienced having Santa Claus show up at their Chirstmas parties, and trips to Disney World that most kids only dream of. Do not even let me get started telling you about the size and quantity of the stuffed animals he bought them!
As the stay at home mother of four small children I was overwhelmed when he sent my mother and I on a luxurious cruise while he stayed home and took care of my babies. I will never forget having such a precious, wonderful time with my mother, and my children report having breakfasts that consisted of cereal and milk poured in a HUGE Tupperware salad bowl that they all ate out of with my daddy for breakfast.
It was the perfect combination of security and excitement growing up with my daddy. My three siblings and myself have always been able to depend on wise advice and support from our daddy no matter what we are going through.
He provided us with summer filled with frogs and trampolines and flashlights and adventures. He pulled us skiing for what seemed like days on end. I know that all four of us siblings try to bring some of the enchantment and love into our own children's lives that he brought into ours.
His love has known no boundaries for me my entire life, I am so blessed to call him my daddy, and my best friend. He truly is magical. All I have to do is close my eyes to hear him say "You're a sweet girl", and I whisper back, "You're a good daddy."