My father was either blessed or cursed, depending on your perspective, to play daddy to three girls.

Now that we’re all grown up, it’s easier to see why it takes a special kind of man to fill that role.

When I was young, my father let me pull and tug his very short hair into many tiny pony tails, he babysat my dolls, and he attended every ballet recital in which my sisters and I performed. And he did all of this with a smile on his face and without complaint.

My dad is sensitive, caring, kind and compassionate, four characteristics that are absolutely essential to be a little girl’s daddy. Little girls want to feel protected and taken care of, which is exactly what my father provided.

He took me under his wing and taught me to fish, enjoy the outdoors and understand just because I’m girl doesn’t mean there is anything I can’t do.

As we grew up, he told us we were smart, beautiful and had the world at our fingertips. He always believed in us and still does to this day.

When I tell my fiancé he’s my favorite guy, he snickers and says, “I bet you say the same thing to your dad,” and he’s right. My fiancé has some tough competition.

Now, my dad also plays papa to my niece, and he’s perfect for that job, too.

So, on this Father’s Day, I am saying thank you to my dad and the over 66 million other dads in the United States. We need your guidance and we appreciate your love.

Be sure to let your dad know what he means to you Sunday, June 20, because it’s the one day of the year he just might let you put him in the spotlight.