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With Father’s Day only a few days away, I began to reflect on the past year and realized this was a big year for my dad and me.

My dad underwent quite possibly one of the hardest times a woman’s father must endure — giving his little girl away at the altar.

My dad and I were inseparable when I was a child.

I went everywhere he went and often questioned my mom’s reasoning when she told me, “No, you cannot go to work with your father.” My dad worked on the road when I was young and would be gone during the week. I didn’t understand why I couldn’t go to school wherever he was and then return with him on weekends to see the family.

My dad and I camped together, fixed bicycles together and built the best tree house imaginable in my front yard together.

As I grew older, my attachment to my father’s hip grew looser but remained intact.

My own life began to sprout from the seeds he planted in my childhood.

In high school, my dad went to every volleyball, basketball and soccer game I played in, even most of the out-of-town matches. He supported my education and knew I would be gone when set free.

Three months after I graduated from high school, I packed my car and headed to Montana. I could see the sadness in my dad’s face as he hugged me goodbye and told me how excited and happy he was for me.

Since that August day, I haven’t again lived in the same state as my father. Our bond, however, stays strong.

When I moved to Arizona, it was my dad who showed up with a van to haul my stuff down south. I will never forget the last road trip I took with him, and how comfortable and unafraid his presence made me feel as I moved off into my unknown future.

When I met my husband, my dad was excited for me, and he later fell in love with him as well. My dad showed me how a real man treats women, and he knew I wouldn’t settle for anything less.

I recently received my professional wedding photos and several of my father caught my eye. One, in particular, captures my father, my husband and me as my father gives my hand to my husband. The looks on all three of our faces can’t be described.

I knew my wedding day would be a joyful yet difficult day for him. He knows I’m happy, which is what he always wanted, but I’m sure it was still hard to accept that I am now a wife, and there is now another strong man in my life.

As we reached the end of the aisle that day, my dad whispered to me, “What if I don’t want to give you away? What if I want to keep you forever?” I told him I would always be his.

I always told my dad he was my favorite. This Father’s Day, he still is — I just have two favorites now.

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  • Joyce S. Kaye

    Beautiful! I never had such a relationship with my father and enjoy hearing how others have been so blessed - good for you!<br /><br />Congratulations on your marriage - and having now two wonderful men in your life!

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