I think it’s safe to say that growing up, I really never understood my dad. He was pretty hard on me at times, always pushing me to do the right things, to do better, to achieve more.
By no means did I make this an easy task for him, because I inherited every ounce of his stubborness, and used it against him at every turn. He could tell me a thousand times over that if I ran face-first into a brick wall, it was going to hurt, and I still had to find out for myself. Looking back, I’m not quite sure why. For some reason I was convinced that I knew better than he did.
I can only imagine how frustrating it must have been to watch me do the wrong things over, and over again, despite all of his best efforts.
Well, here we are twenty-four Father’s Days later, and I finally understand my dad. I finally understand that he didn’t push me into organized sports, when all I wanted to do was sit home and play video games, just so that I could play baseball. He wanted me to learn teamwork and dedication.
I finally understand that he didn’t make me sit at the kitchen table until my homework was finished just because he liked to torment me. He knew that all of the academic skills I could get so that more doors would open for me when I was older.
I finally understand that he didn’t make me get a job or make me buy my own car because he didn’t want to spend money on me, but because he wanted me to develop a strong work ethic.
I finally understand that he didn’t keep pushing me, and lecturing me over and over again just because he liked the sound of his own voice, but because he knew I was capable of great success, if I would just get out of my own way.
Well, I’m twenty-four years old now. I run my own very successful business, doing something that I absolutely love. I create a comic that entertains tens of thousands of people. I have self-published two books and just signed a publishing deal with a very respected and well-known company. I owe a lot of it to my father. To both my parents.
When we’re kids we always say that we’re “never going to grow up to be like them”. Well, I’m an adult now, and my father is someone that I have an enormous amount of respect and admiration for. He taught me all of the most valuable lessons that I live my life by today, and he never stopped believing in me.
I would be honored to grow up to be like him.
Happy Father’s Day, Dad.