Saturday, June 18, 2011

to my poppa bear

during the spring semester of my senior year, i gave a speech for my dad at my sorority's annual 
"Dad's Day"
in celebration of Father's Day, enjoy!

 I LOVE YOU DAD!





If I could start out by describing my dad in one word, I’d have to say that it is completely impossible to explain him so simply. He is by no means a simple man.

He’s hilarious, hard working, adventurous, quietly servant hearted, a powerful leader, an entrepreneur, an example to those around him, extremely confident and the greatest husband to my momma.

Growing up I remember so many things about him. Waiting for him as a little girl by the glass door to get home from work. Refilling his iced tea during dinner with just the right amount of ice and two sweet-in-lows and a lemon. Him trying to help me to train my first puppy, Dotty, although that ended with great failure on my part. Letting me help him plant all the flowers in the yard each springtime and taking me and my sisters for bike rides, letting us climb on his shoulders in the swimming pool, and playing ridiculous singing games with us in the car while driving to Amarillo and Lubbock for Christmas.

My dad is lucky enough to be the only male in our family, outnumbered by my mom, me and my two sisters and our puppy, Bonnie (she wears a pink collar). Although my dad thrives off of the small amount of guy time he gets when we are with my extended family at the Beach and over Christmas, he has never made us feel that he wished he had had a boy. If anything, he has embraced our girly-ness. When we were little it wasn’t my mom but my DAD who painted our fingernails red and French braided our hair before church on Sundays. I’m pretty sure he still knows how to French braid…

And, If you’ve ever met my dad you know immediately that he was and is the class clown. He’s the life of the party. And I can say with much conviction that my dad is WAY more fun than I am. If there’s a dance floor, he’s on it. If there’s a ZZ Top song on the radio, he’s singing it. Loudly.

My dad is also surprisingly creative. He was the one who gifted me with a great love for creating. Every space in our home must be just so and every picture frame and book must be in its place… Because of him.
I remember one day when I was probably in the 1st or 2nd grade, I was at home sick and Dad stayed home with me and taught me how to draw a simple house with a white picket fence, in perspective, and how to draw a perfect dog.
I’d like to think that’s how my passion for art began; through him.
And even though my dad’s love for entrepreneurial business runs deep, his desire for each of his daughters to live out their dreams runs much, much deeper. I’m sure when he heard I was interested in a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting degree he was a little concerned, but he has never once let me doubt that what I love to do will bring me great fulfillment in my life.

Another great thing about my dad is his sense of adventure. Both He and my mom have made it a complete priority in their lives to travel and see the world, and I can say for sure that I inherited that gene.
This past spring I was able to spend 5 months in Rome studying and traveling and at the end of that time, he and my mom came to travel with me. I can say for sure that those two weeks were some of the best of my life. My dad never stopped, and he made sure that he soaked in as much of each city as he could. Nothing was off limits, if it was there, we were going to see it. And we did. It was the greatest adventure.

I’m so thankful that my Dad encourages me to live my life fully, to see the world, to seek adventure and to never settle for what’s comfortable. When I flippantly talk about taking a couple months off after graduation to travel, or to go take a crazy job in a crazy city his response is always, “you absolutely should! You’d be crazy not to!!!” How lucky am I that I have a dad that encourages me to go wherever I need to go and do whatever I need to do, even if that means being far away from him?

Something that has become so apparent to me in just the last couple of years is what a servant my dad is to my sisters and my mom. He has never thought twice about driving the boat around the lake in circles with my 20 friends on board even when he’s exhausted. Or packing up and unpacking my room and re hanging pictures, and carting all of my crap to and from Dallas every time I decide to change rooms in my house here in Waco. Or waking up every morning and driving 45 minutes to work with excitement and joy. He loves to work and has taught me the value of that in so many different ways. I am so thankful that he has impressed upon me the importance of what it means to work hard and serve people well each and every day.

Dad, I honestly could go on for days about how great you are, and I’m sure you’d really, really love that, but I guess I’ll close by saying thank you.

Thank you so much.
For teaching me what it means to make mistakes and reminding me that failure is so much better than complacency.
For reminding me every time I’m stressed about schoolwork or tests of your go to phrase that “Good grades are good but Good times are better”.
For raising me to be rooted in the knowledge that Jesus Christ died to save me from my sins and that God loves me completely and perfectly.
For waking up at 6:00 am on the first weekend of every summer month to go shop for antiques with me in Canton.
For reminding me almost every night to slow down and look at the stars, because they really are spectacular. (even though sometimes I roll my eyes…)
For teaching me through the way you love momma, how important it is to wait for a man who will love me, pursue me, provide for me and make me laugh the very same way you have for her all of these years.
For letting me drive the golf cart while you golf, and sometimes letting me putt, even though I’m so terrible.
For making me laugh and teaching me to never take myself too seriously.
For always making morning Starbucks runs a priority.
For embracing the uncanny resemblance you have to Cam from Modern Family in his paisley button up shirts.
For instilling in me the ability to be leader and to have confidence in who I am and in what I believe.

And For sitting through endless piano recitals, talent shows, volleyball games, choir concerts, Sing performances, art openings and graduations.

Thank you for being there. For making my life and my sisters lives a priority in YOURS. Thank you for being my rock. My leader and my Dad. I don’t know who I’d be without you.
I love you Dad.

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