I miss my Daddy soooo much it hurts! He was not a perfect man by any means but from my perspective, he was a perfect Daddy. Following are some of the reasons I feel that way and some things that he did that influenced me in my life:

  • Daddy NEVER belittled me about anything.
    • He always told me how proud he was of me. If I made a mistake he would just show me what I did wrong and help me to do it right until I felt good about it.
  • Daddy Loved me unconditionally.
    Angela Karate, ACDC & Graduation (4)
    My friend Debbie Pesce and I in Lakeland FL
    • Even after I came home too drunk to stand up when I was 14 or when I told him I was pregnant at 16 years old he NEVER quit loving me. Sure, I woke with a horrible hangover and picked up the phone in my room to hear him on the phone with Catholic boarding schools (which he never sent me to) but I still knew that he was doing it out of love. Even after going to the doctor to confirm my impending motherhood and even though I knew he was disappointed because he could not look me in the eye for a couple of days, by the time I stood in front of the Justice of the Peace I knew that he loved me and his unborn grandchild.

      Angela Beauty Contest & Sisters with babies (4)
      Sister Teri & Me with our babies, Curtis & Sean 1983
  • Daddy taught me that I could do anything that I set my mind to. 
    • At 9 years old I was asked in front of an audience of parents at a beauty pageant what I wanted to be when I grew up. Daddy was the only one that did not laugh when I said that I wanted to be the first female astronaut. I believe even today that if I had wanted to I could have but the only reason I didn’t was that I made other choices for my life. (BTW – I made second place, I am the #4 & the one in the long pink dress on the right.)

      Angela Karate, ACDC & Graduation (2)
      Angela’s Graduation 1984
  • Daddy taught me that each day was the first day of the rest of my life.
    • Like I said before, Daddy was not a perfect man and so I am sure that he spoke from experience and did not want me to live in the defeat of the mistakes of my past. It was that mindset that prodded me toward my high school graduation and every other accomplishment that I have made in my life. Even now I am working towards a degree and instead of settling for an AA or a bachelors degree I am going to set the mark for either a Masters or a PHD. Why not? Today is the first day of the rest of my life!
  • Daddy taught me to see life as an adventure. 
    • Whether it was climbing mountains, riding a toboggan, rafting the rapids, taking a Sunday drive without a map, or getting splashed by a whale at Sea World, Daddy taught me to never miss an opportunity for adventure. “We only live this life once,” he would say.
  • Daddy taught me to be competitive.
    Angela Karate, ACDC & Graduation (3)
    Me with Karate instructor after I earned my yellow belt.
    • As the baby of 3 girls, I was the boy that Daddy never had. Funny thing is that I was the most feminine one of the bunch but it did not stop him from teaching me everything he could about football, boxing and Olympic sports. I remember a very valuable lesson he taught me when he was helping me learn to kick a board in half to earn my yellow belt in Karate. He said, “Bird, what you are doing wrong is that you are focusing on the board. You need to focus on a point past the board.” Sure enough, after that, I was able to kick several boards in half. I was so pumped about it that when the instructor said, “Ready, se…(BAM!)”. That sucker was kindling before he ever got to “Go!”. This lesson is probably part of the reason why I set very high goals in my life because I do not focus on the barriers but break through them “BAM!”.
  • Daddy was never in competition with me.
    • When I say that he was never in competition with me I do not mean that we did not compete. We would race, play pool, play games or play fight or chase but he NEVER got angry if he would lose. It was a win-win for him. If he won he could be proud of his accomplishment and if I won he would be proud that he taught me well. We never lost pieces to a game because he became angry that he lost and I did not fear to win a race against him.
  • Daddy taught me to never tolerate being abused by anyone.
    • Well, here I am. It took me a long time but I am finally done with tolerating emotional, verbal, financial, and religious abuse (not to mention physical). Daddy would spank me as a child like a father should but he did it very sparingly and not out of anger. He did not use twisted religious falsehoods, verbal assaults, mind games or my dependence on his money (it was NEVER mentioned) to manipulate me or other people to get things that he wanted.
  • Daddy NEVER raised his hand to my Mama.
    Angela Growing up (3)
    Daddy & Mama in Rock Springs, Wyoming
    • He and Mama would bicker and argue just like any other couple (maybe even more) but he never raised a hand to her. He did not threaten to hurt her or threaten to hurt someone or something she loved. If he got too angry he would leave the house and come back later, usually with flowers.
  • Daddy showed me what a REAL MAN was by being a REAL MAN.
    • By that, I mean that he did not need to demean those around him to make him feel masculine. He was not afraid to wear pink or to show his emotions because he was not insecure about his manhood and did not think it was about having to be tough. He was REAL.
      Daddy 23
      Daddy dressed up as his favourite cartoon character The Pink Panther for a costume party.

      Daddy would cry at a movie yet be able to get up with tears in his eyes and knock some guy’s block off if they were abusing a woman in front of him. He would have never let someone shake their fist in my mother’s face without stepping in and intervening on her behalf (his other half). There were things that I would not tell my Daddy because I would not want to see him getting in trouble for hurting that person. I knew that he loved me because he protected me as much as he was able.

  • Daddy was gentle.
    Daddy's Lap
    Teri & me on Daddy’s lap
    • His nickname was Gentle Ben. That does not mean that he was wimpy by any means. He was like a big ole Teddy Bear. Oh, how I miss his bear hugs. It never mattered how old I was I could always sit on his lap and cry if I needed to (which I did a lot). But I do not remember him making me cry, EVER! Even if I cried because I got a spanking, Daddy would always console me after. I miss hearing him say, “What’s wrong Bird?” if I was not smiling or seemed down. Also, I do not ever remember Daddy hitting an animal but he could even train a cat to roll over. Animals loved him!
  • Daddy never tried to isolate me.
    • Even though we moved a lot and I was always the new kid on the block, he made sure that I got out and made friends. He made sure to take our family to see family on holidays or vacations. He did not try to make himself the centre of my world but made my world a bigger place. Because of that, he became the most important person on this earth to me along with my Mama.
  • Daddy was not perfect and did not set unrealistic expectations of me.
    • Like I said before, he was not perfect so therefore he understood my imperfections. He was not a narcissistic arsehole that had a superior attitude. He was easy to talk to and cared more about the people around him than himself, especially his girls.
  • Daddy loved me as my Daddy. 
    Angela Growing up (4)
    The boy Daddy never had. Ha ha!
    • He did not love me in some sort of displaced love way. He NEVER gave me a reason to not trust him. There were no boundaries with Daddy because there was never a reason for boundaries. I did not have to worry about how I was dressed or anything so ridiculous because I was his daughter for goodness sake! It is horrible that there are girls out there that have to worry that their own father would be inappropriate with them. It is unthinkable! Shame shame shame on them!

Again, I know it sounds like I am trying to say my Daddy was perfect but he was not. He drank too much, he was overweight, he had his skeletons, and he could be impatient at times. My point is that as MY DADDY he was perfect. He has set the bar very high but I think that there should be more fathers out there that set the bar high for their daughters too. One of the reasons that there are so many people falling away from faith in God is because their earthly fathers have made it hard for them to visualize a loving Heavenly Father. In my opinion, a Bible held up in the hand of a “perfect” & “humble” man that would abuse a woman or a child is doing more damage than a can of beer held up in the hand of an imperfect but loving Daddy.

Cheers to you fathers that are setting the Daddy bar high! I encourage my sons and the men that I know to be good Daddys too. It is so important!

So now I will continue to break barriers as my Daddy waits with my Heavenly Father for me to finish running this race. Till then…

Jesus’ truly,

Fearless

cropped-hungry-pup-1315869.jpgTreasures from God’s Word

Hebrews 12:1

“Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,”
 (KJV)

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