You always used to tell me, that from the first moment I looked up into your proud eyes on the day I was born, you knew that I was something special. Something just clicked, and we became two peas of a pod.
Since then, it has been one of the biggest honors of my life to be a part of a father-daughter relationship that grew into an irreplaceable friendship.
Our bond is founded on the principles that you’ve taught me: selflessness, compassion, and persistence.
Growing up, you sacrificed everything for our family without even blinking. You were always willing to do whatever it took to make sure we had everything we needed. You wanted to give us the happiest childhood you could, and that meant working extra hard to tackle problems as they came along.
You always said you wanted us to enjoy being a kid and to leave the grown up stuff to you. And, I never fully appreciated that until I grew up and saw how much stress and heartbreak goes on in the real world.
And while you did your best to shield us from it, there were always times that we got glimpses of hard times and heart break. But, even this was a chance for you to teach us a lesson about life.
You showed me how to face adversity with grace and to never let failure be permanent.
To this day, you are the first person I turn to for advice. You’re the voice of reason and the one that helps center me when I feel like it’s all too much to handle.
And as I get older, I can feel the dynamic of our relationship start to change.
I know I will always be your little girl, but now I have the added bonus of being your friend. Of being there to listen to your fears and your stories as well. Of being there when you need advice, which isn’t nearly as often as I do.
I couldn’t be more grateful for your role in my life, and I can only hope that you’re proud of the person that I am becoming. I hope that you see a lot of the characteristics in me that you made a part of yourself.
I hope that you are proud of me when you watch me with my kids someday.
Because my biggest goal will always be to create the kind of environment for my kids that you created for me, a family that grows together and evolves over time to be a constant and an unconditional source of friendship and love.
So, thank you. For being a role model, a friend, a dad. And for teaching me about life and myself in all of the little moments.