I know we are a week away from Mothers Day, but this post has been writing itself in my head all weekend and I need to get it out. It’s a PSA of sorts…if you are the dad of a daughter, do NOT underestimate the monumental role you play in her life – even long after she is a grown woman (whatever that is)! If you are the dad of a special needs daughter, just multiply this by some large number. Mom may carry the day to day load for most families – especially regarding the extra needs – but she truly can’t “do it all”.
The burning need to write about this subject is most certainly due to the 5th anniversary of my dad’s passing, which will occur sometime around 2am tonight. I remember it like it was 5 minutes ago. I always had a special relationship with him, not the typical “daddy’s little girl” kind of thing, but more of the whatcha’ doin’? can I come? can I help? how does that work? can you show me? kind of way. I think I might write a book one day “The Men Who Helped Make Me The Woman I Am” and he will be top of the list, in all caps, and bold face print. I can even say, it is largely because of him that I am married to a wonderful man.
I try to emphasize this level of importance to my husband, Brad. His upbringing was much less “in tact” than mine from a family perspective. I had/have wonderful role models (thanks momma) that have provided much needed guidance over the years. I recognize the enormity with which my words, actions, and and even body language translates to my girls. I remind Brad of this as his role is just as big, if not bigger, in various ways.
Virginia and Kimberly have always adored their dada. There has never been a doubt. He says he plays second fiddle to me, but the moment he is gone his absence looms large over all of us girls. Tomorrow will be four days of me flying solo while he is working in CA and I have answered no less than 50 questions on his whereabouts, schedule to return, and even what are his activities while he is away! Not only is he important to them because they love him, but who he is represents who they will look for in a partner as far as how he treats me and how he interacts with them.
I can relate to this, as I know my sisters can too…..one look from your dad when you have done something wrong is enough to devastate a loving daughter, regardless of her age!! Likewise, an approving or encouraging thought can cure nearly anything. This is the power the dad has. It is not to be taken lightly. Your girls are yours from the day they are born until forever. Earn their love and adoration and know that even when the day comes that you are no longer with them on this earth “the song of their life will still be sung, by the light…of the moon you hung” -Emmylou Harris