I was a fortunate baby when I was born: I had a set of parents who loved God, loved each other and loved their 2 little daughters. But when I was only 9 months old my dad went to be with the Lord. I don't have a single memory of the man who helped give me life, but I do have pictures. And from those pictures I can tell how much he loved my sister and I. There's a picture of him holding me as a newborn in the hospital; he is absolutely glowing. There are pictures of him sleeping with me on his tummy on the couch; I guess he just couldn't get enough. There are pictures of him just being with his girls. There is no doubt in my mind that for the first 9 months of my life I was incredibly loved by my dad. I will treasure those pictures forever and be eternally grateful for the love he showered upon not only me and my sister, but also my mom.
But things didn't end there for me in the way of having a loving father. No - God had other plans. And these plans involved my mom getting re-married to the most amazing man that I know. Not only do I have pictures of this man to prove how much he loved every single one of his 4 children - but I have millions of memories as well. Memories that will be as fresh in my mind twenty years from now as they are right now. My dad has always loved me like his own. There has never been any favoritism between his biological children and his adopted children. Never, not once. Let me tell you a bit about who my dad is:
My dad is a strong Christian man; my dad is a hard worker; my dad is gentle; my dad is kind; my dad is selfless; my dad is loving; my dad is talented (you should see some of the things he builds for his grand-daughters!); my dad is patient; my dad is a huge sports fan (go, Bombers, go!); my dad is funny ("Dad-joke" funny, if you know what I mean); my dad is just plain amazing!! He has always provided for our family and we have never gone without the things that we needed. He has raised us in a wonderful Christian environment. He has disciplined us for our mistakes, but never judged us. He is a dad who doesn't shy away from showing emotion. He is a dad who always showed his children how to love his wife. And not only is he a wonderful dad and husband, he's an incredible Grandpa. I wish you could all see the way his eyes light up every time he sees one of his grand-daughters. He is also respectful and honest. And I was so proud to have him on my arm as I walked down the aisle almost six years ago to become a married woman...
2 years after Les and I got married, we had our first daughter. When Joelle was born, I was given a wonderful gift. Not only the obvious gift of a beautiful child - but I was given the gift of having a wonderful father for my children, just like I had when I was growing up. Les has been an amazing father to Joelle and Malia. He works hard to provide for us, he shows us every day that he loves us. He showers the girls with love in the form of hugs, kisses, "airplane rides", attention, tickles, bike rides, and more. You should've seen how proud Les was when he held Joelle in his ams for the very first time. I will never forget the look in his eyes. I knew without a doubt that he would treasure his children just like my dad treasured his. God had blesssed me once again.
There is one more father in my life - one who has been around since I got married to Les; and that is Henry. My father-in-law. I am very fortunately to get along with my in-laws; I love them both very much. Henry is another wonderful example of an excellent husband, father and grandfather. His eyes light up just as much when he sees his grand-daughters and he is gentle and loving and patient as well.
I want to wish a very special HAPPY FATHER'S DAY to all of these wonderful father figures that I am so blessed to have in my life. The Lord smiles upon me through each of you every single day.