Daddy, dad, pops, pa, papa, father, whatever you call him he’s the man. The dude, the hero and the guy in charge.
(Well, unless the mom’s in charge)
Growing up, he was the one who laid down the law and the one who enforced it. He was the one who joked around and broke my chops. My dad knew the buttons to push to make me laugh, cry and scream.
Don’t get me wrong, my mom did too. They worked off each other, for each other and usually were never against each other. It was me and my brother against them. But usually it was my father who had the final word. If my father said I couldn’t do something, there was not a chance I could change his mind. If my mom said no, I could sometimes bring her around, depending on what it was about.
As I got older, he taught me how to drive, would give me spending money if I needed it and would still bust my chops about life in general. We argued, a lot, but mainly because he tried to teach me things at the most inopportune time, such as where the lake was.
Every argument went like this: I would get angry and yell. He would tell me not to yell. I would try to continue my argument and he would continue to tell me not to yell. We usually didn’t get very far and there were a lot of door slamming in my house.
My dad also has this knack of laughing during a time when he shouldn’t necessarily. And I guess, looking back, I realize he was laughing at me! I would get frustrated with him, and instead of letting me speak, he would laugh because I was getting so upset. Let me tell you, it is frustrating when I think back to those times. I just wanted him to hear me. And he will tell you that he heard me, but that I wasn’t listening to him.
Don’t even get him started on the difference between hearing and listening.
But I look back and aside from how frustrated he used to get me, I learned to appreciate the other stuff. The lessons he taught me, the stories he shared with me and the role he has in my life.
- My dad wasn’t so strict about how I dressed to go clubbing. My jeans were tight and my top was low cut, but never crossed over to inappropriate. (That wasn’t the way we dressed in the early 90s). It was the lipstick that would tip him over the edge. If I wore a dark lipstick, regardless of my top or jeans, he would lose his mind! So, I would just apply my lipstick in the car (Revlon’s Blackberry was my colour of choice in the early 90s). My friends’ fathers used to be way stricter than mine, so they would actually change entire outfits in the car on the way there.
- I could go to clubs wherever I wanted, as long as it wasn’t in downtown Toronto. I remember one summer avoiding his questions about where I was going. It was a venue that held club nights on alternate Saturdays throughout the summer, and located along the Lakeshore in Toronto. When asked where I was going, I told him Etobicoke and while not necessarily a lie, it was a bit of a stretch. Two weeks later when he asked me where I was going and wanted a name of the club, so I told him; The Palais Royale, thinking nothing of it. This particular historic building been around since 1920’s. And apparently frequented by my parents when they were younger. Another factor that I had to take into account, seeing as they grew up in Toronto!
- He made sure I wasn’t afraid to ask for help. For as long as I could remember, my parents told me that if I needed help, to ask them for it. No matter what. That message was reinforced when I turned 19 and started going out. If anything happened, I was to call my parents. Well, I put that to the test once when my friend and I got a little to inebriated to drive home (she was driving – not me) but we got kicked out of the club and then asked to leave. I had no choice but to call my parents. And while I knew my mom wouldn’t be mad at me, I was afraid my father would be. Even though they had to get out of bed, drive from Brampton to the west end of Toronto, they came, drove my friend (and her car) to her house and let me ramble all the way home. In the end, they were both proud of me for not driving home.
- He bought me my first car. Yes, it was a 1985 Pontiac Camaro, but it was a car. And none of my other friends had one.
- He worked hard. For a lot of my early childhood, he worked. He may have missed a lot of dinners, and goodnight kisses, but he made up for it later on. And he taught me that if you want something in life, you have to work for it. Nothing will be handed to you.
- He loves my mother. And he has shown me how a man should treat a woman. I love that about him. Aside from this little bickering they do (they will tell you that is how they express their love), he is good to my mom. He will work longer, harder and farther away to make things easier for her. He set a high standard that I’m proud to say my husband lives up to.
- He’s one of the good guys. My dad is the one you want in your corner. If he says he has your back, he does. If you lie to him, all bets are off. For my dad, a deal’s a deal and he would prefer you be honest, than try to pull a fast one.
- He’s wrapped around my pinkie finger. I know it and he knows it. He accepted that fact a long time ago and I relish in it!
- He loves his grandkids. It’s so cute to see him with my girls and my nephew. He becomes putty in their hands. They love him lots!
I could never thank him enough for what he’s taught me, how he’s guided me and how he loves me.
Happy Father’s Day, dad! I love you.
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I also want to wish my husband a very Happy Father’s Day too. You are an amazing father, so patient and so kind. I am so happy you are my babies’ daddy, and I know they love you lots!
Enjoy your day. We love you.