When I first hit teen years I had no idea what my dad would go through, sometimes it still baffles me. One of my frequent phrases was, “why is Daddy always angry at me? Why is he always telling me to take my nose ring out and to wear higher cut tops?” What I didn’t understand at the time, and still don’t sometimes, was that Dad still sees me as the innocent nine year old who would run to greet him at the door, instead of the tall, almost adult, 14 year old who is always ready to go out when he comes home.
During my 13th year I really struggled with the rules that had suddenly been set down. Not being allowed to date, or wear what I want or draw tattoos on my arm made me rebellious and disrespectful. He was working really hard to protect me and keep our relationship strong and I was just being stubborn and selfish, ruining the relationship he was working so hard to protect. He was tearing down the walls I put up and on the other side I was building more walls.
I decided recently that in order to get more freedoms and be happier I should probably just follow the rules he had set down. I stopped drawing on my arm and wearing loads of Gothic jewelry. My tops slowly became higher cut and I changed without a fuss whenever he asked me to. But that’s not the point to this blog post.
My dad is my hero. Always has been. I will be lucky if one day I can marry a man like my dad. He is stable, strong and protective. He’s always there when I need him and he gives up so much just so I can have something that I want. More importantly, he always comes home at night. I could have ruined my relationship with him, if I had wanted to. If he hadn’t fought so hard, he and I may not even be talking to each other right now. And that would have been the biggest mistake I could have made. Luckily he’s Irish and stubborn and therefore wouldn’t let that happen. I can’t imagine what my life would be like without him in it. I probably wouldn’t be as stable as I am and…well I don’t want to even imagine where I would be without him.
So to the girls who think they hate their dads or don’t understand why they are acting as they are, it’s because they love you. And they are struggling with you growing up as much as you are. They look at you and see a little girl who still needs their protection. Because really, even if you aren’t little, you do still need protection. So girls, don’t diss your dad, because one day you will wonder why you ever hurt him and broke the rules. And one day you will wish your dad was beside you and, if you ruined your relationship with him, he might not be there. But it is more likely that no matter what he will be waiting for you to come home, his arms never tiring from standing, open wide, ready to greet you when you get home.