– Honorable Mention Winner Valentine’s Contest.
I’m not exactly sure what it’s like to be a parent yet, although, I’m sure it’ll hit me when the time comes this summer. I just hope that when that baby is born, I’m as good of a parent as you’ve been for the past 26 years of my life. Like you, I hope I have the patience to deal with whatever painful circumstance comes my way, and that if my child ever stops talking to me, I have the perseverance and grit to never give up on them. I’ve heard it takes those attributes to raise a child–patience, perseverance, grit– and having had you as a parent, I’ve definitely seen them in action–but, unfortunately, it really wasn’t until I got older and lost five years of a relationship with you that I noticed them.
I’m so sorry I missed out, but I’m really sorry you missed out. I’m sorry you didn’t get to experience your first child going through college. I’m sorry you missed out on living vicariously through my journeys to Italy. I’m sorry for the missed Christmases, Thanksgivings and birthdays. And I’m especially sorry for having missed out on saying “Happy Father’s Day” year after year. Approaching the horizon of parenthood, I can only imagine what it’s like to have one of your own disown you, and I regret this choice daily. I’m so sorry I did that to you, Dad. I’m just thrilled to have you back in my life. As cliche’ as it may sound, I don’t know what I’d do without you. I love you so much, Dad, and I can’t wait to see you flourish as a grandparent. Happy Valentine’s Day.