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ABCDad

Dear Dad,

I’ll admit it: You are pretty cool. Sure, you might embarrass the hell out of me from time to time and have the cheesiest jokes; but, you’re also one of my biggest supporters, best coaches, and closest friends.

When I think of what a good dad should be, I think of you. Yeah, you don’t know what to do if I randomly burst into tears or understand why I need so many different pairs of shoes, but you’re one of the best people in my life. And for that, I’m forever grateful.

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In case you’ve forgotten how cool you are, I’ve created a list to remind you:

A – Altruistic. Thanks for teaching me to put others before myself. I grew up watching you care for the people around you–whether that be our family or friends or even someone we didn’t necessarily know. You make time for people who need it. You offer a helping hand where you can. You’ve been an example of kindness since my first breaths.

B – Buoyant. To be buoyant is to be characterized by liveliness or lightheartedness. And that you are. I can always count on you to crack a joke or make a funny face. People gravitate toward you because of your lightheartedness–as seen by your wide and far-reaching friend circle.

C – Coach. Dad, you took the time to teach me the rules of the game (any and all.) You encouraged me to try any sport that I found interesting. You practiced with me on and off of the court/field so that I could be successful and skilled. It takes a lot of patience to work with kids, especially ones who get frustrated when they’re not great at something; Yet you always encouraged me to keep trying until I finally did get it. You even volunteered your time to coach middle school girls’ basketball. That alone deserves an award.

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D – Daring. When faced with a choice between easy and challenging, you push yourself. I watched you leave a company after many years of commitment with the aspirations of more. You stepped out of your comfort zone and worked your ass off to provide for our family. You took a chance on yourself and persevered through tough times. Because of you, I know that I too can dare to expect more than easy and comfortable in my life.

E – Ethical. You’ve taught me the difference between right and wrong from a young age. You are honest and always do what’s best for the whole.

F – Friend. I think that this is one of the best words I can use to describe you. And I think many others would agree with me. I couldn’t even begin to count the amount of friends you have in your life. I grew up surrounded by amazing, wonderful, and kind people because you know how to pick good friends and you continue to be a good friend. Not only are you my dad, but you are also my friend, too. You are my sounding board and supporter, and I love you so much for that.

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G – Generous. You are a generous person. If someone is in need, you help in big or small ways. I’ve grown up watching you volunteer your time and energy at multiple organizations because you wanted to make a difference. You think beyond yourself and care for others in whatever way you can.

H – Hardworking. Dad, you are honestly the hardest working person I know. Whether it be getting stuff done around the house, sports, or work itself–you make sure that the job is done and that it’s done well. You hate when I say, “It is what it is,” because in your mind you can always work to improve whatever the situation is.  When you set out to start your own business, you put in hours and hours (and still continue to) of hard work to build something you were proud of. Four offices and a million hours later, you’ve established a successful and growing business that anyone could be proud of.I’m fortunate that you’ve instilled that work ethic in me, too. You pushed me to try my best at everything I’ve set out to do and it’s made me a better person.

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I – Intelligent. You’re a smart cookie–even if I don’t like to admit it. You know more random facts than most people I know and that’s pretty cool. Throughout the years you’ve taught me more than I think you’ll ever know.

J – Judicious. You use good judgement and common sense. You are a practical person. This is another quality that has made you successful throughout the years.

K – Kind. You can make friends with anyone you meet. I used to hate running errands with you when I was little because I knew it meant that we would bump into someone you knew and a five minute task would turn into a half hour. Now that I’m older, I’ve learned to appreciate and respect this quality about you a lot. You genuinely care to know how people are doing and can always find a way to make conversation with whoever your path crosses.

L – Loving. The boys and I are so lucky to have grown up in a loving family. We don’t see eye to eye on everything, but you and mom have always taught us to overcome our differences and love one another. I’ve had an amazing example of love throughout my life because of you and mom. I’ve watched you come home from work and give her a kiss or hold hands walking down the street for 24 years now. These actions, though little, mean so much. Your example of love has set the standards high for my own.

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M – Multifaceted. You’re good at many things. As told by this list.

N – Neighborly. As I’ve mentioned above–you’re a good person. You help when you can. You do what’s right. Any one would be lucky to have you in their corner. And lucky for me, you’re stuck in mine.

O – Open. You are not afraid to tell it like it is. I don’t always love to hear what you have to say; But, for the most part, I appreciate having someone in my life who isn’t afraid to give it to me straight. On more than one occasion you’ve given me the reality check I need. You level with me when I need it.

P – Permanent. You are a permanent and important fixture in so many peoples’ lives. I know that whatever road life takes me down, you’ll always be there. I can’t imagine what my life would be like without you in it and I’m so glad I’ve never had to. I love knowing that you will always be there for me–even when I’m far away.

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Q – Quick-witted. You’ve always got a quick response for everything. You make me roll my eyes on occasion, but I’ll admit it, you’re pretty funny.

R – Reliable. I know that I can count on you. If you say you’ll do something, you’ll do it. You follow through and have always taught us that we should do the same. You would never turn your back on someone. I feel lucky to know that you’ll always have my back.

S – Sarcastic. Thanks for passing that on, too.

T – Thankful. This is something I am because of you. I hope this list gives you an idea of how much I appreciate all that you do and all that you are. You have always been one of the most important and influential people in my life. You have many qualities that I aspire for. To have known you since my first breath is a lucky, lucky thing. I couldn’t have asked for a better dad.

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U – Understanding. Once upon a time, when I may or may not have gotten my second speeding ticket in the span of a month, I cried to mom because I was scared of what you might say when I told you. When I finally mustered up the courage, all you said was, “Shit happens.” You’ve been witness to my mistakes, but you’ve never put me down because of them. You’ve taught me how to laugh it off and learn from it. I’m thankful for a dad who has allowed me to spread my wings, but who will always be there with open arms when I fall.

V – Values. Thanks for teaching me right from wrong. Thanks for teaching me to appreciate the good stuff. Thanks for teaching me what is truly valuable in life.

W – Wise. Not only are you intelligent, but you are also wise. You have experienced a fair bit of life and are better because of it. You have weathered through whatever storm life has thrown at you and come out stronger in the aftermath.

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X – (E)Xcellent. You’re going to have to cut me some slack here–there aren’t many great X adjectives to choose from. You are an excellent person, friend, husband, and father. Anyone who knows you is lucky.

Y – You. You are you. And I love that.

Z – Zero. There are zero other people in the world that I would want to call my dad.

I don’t tell you often enough how thankful I am to have you in my life. So although I can’t celebrate this Father’s Day with you, I hope this list begins to express how great you are and how lucky I feel to call you my dad. Thanks for being who you are and inspiring who I am. You are truly one in a million.

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Love,

Your baby girl

 

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