Full house??? Anyone with me? I KNOW my sister in love is with me!
Outside of financially providing for our family, Dad did something for me that I absolutely can not ever repay him for. He gave me an identity and value in myself that is NOT dependent on those around me. He challenged me to push myself, encouraged me in all my various endeavors and allowed me to fail at things without condemning the effort. He reminded (still does) that he loves me and thinks I am his "perfect" daughter. [to which i roll my eyes, because we all know I am FAR from perfect]. He reminded me continuously I could do anything I set my mind to. He taught me to be respectful of others and leave places cleaner than I found them. He taught me to look at the big picture. Often times, when I would complain about my most recent drama, his response would be "Is the world going to stop spinning over this?". He made me laugh. He gave me physical affection and nurtured me when I was upset. He taught me to be generous. He was a life coach, which at times may have seemed critical, but I never doubted his intention or motivation behind the constructive criticism. He LOVES my Mom and allowed Scott and I to see the value she has in our family. Because of Dad, I am the woman I am today. I recently sat in on a lecture around gender differences and much of the discussion focused around children's needs from each parent individually. It reinforced the ways my Mom and Dad's independent role in my life has shaped me to day. With such a spectacular example and to know that God's love for me is even greater than Dad's, it allows me to appreciate the magnitude of our Holy God.
I hope and pray that today of all days, Dad feels overwhelming loved and appreciated.
Dad, you are one of the most important people in my life and there is NO way I would be who I am without you...I still need you and use the lessons you have taught me daily. (many of the things I learned from you are just now really starting to make sense and sink in) I know one day you will be an amazing grandfather to my children and I am so grateful they will have you as a role model. They will be infinitely blessed just as I am.
Happy Birthday! Love your favorite and ONLY daughter. :)