define my worth and character forever, no matter what happens in my life. In my early twenties, I was getting ready for a formal evening out, designer dress, the works. While getting out my attire, I realized that my satin evening purse had a busted chain… not only that, but it was broken in a way that… Oh my gosh! I thought could never be repaired and certainly not in time for my date. It was the only purse I had that would work with my dress and I just had to wear that dress with that particular evening purse!
Because I had chosen this particular dress just to go with the evening purse my Dad had given me for Christmas which had been his perfectly selected gift wrapping for his generous Christmas check. My Dad had shopped for and selected this elegant designer purse just for me and I liked it so very much for just that reason.
I rushed into the library where Dad was watching TV and in the brokenhearted frustration drama only a twenty year old preparing for a black tie affair with her beau could create, held up the purse that was destined to ruin the whole evening.
“Daddy can you fix it? Please can you?! I got my dress just to go with the purse you gave me. Please Daddy, I have to take it tonight. I just have to! But I think it’s broken for good … Daddy, what do you think?”
He turned from the TV with a slightly amused but concerned smile as he took my purse from me and said. “Go on and get ready. I will see what I can do.”
Feeling better that my Dad was on it, I showered then rushed into the kitchen to see my Dad at the breakfast counter with his tools out working on the chain of my purse. There was also a needle and thread involved.
I observed Dad’s work table as I thought, Daddy can sew?… “Daddy, how’s it coming along? Do you think it can it be fixed?”
Dad glanced up at me and said. “Don’t you need to be getting ready. Your date will be here soon.”
Okay… Daddy, okay … I am. I will.” As I rushed back to my dressing area and proceeded to do my hair, make up, etc. I was frantic. I had no other purse that would work with the dress that I so wanted to wear.
I walked into my bedroom to get my dress and there on my bed sat my purse. I held it up and I couldn’t even tell it had been broken. I quickly put on my dress and finished getting ready, putting my lipstick, hairbrush, etc, into my treasured Dad given, Dad repaired purse.
Then, the doorbell rang. I hurried down the hallway to the entry hall to find Dad talking with my date. Dad smiled in pride when I entered…. his eyes lit up as they always did when I entered a room. “Dad, you did it, you fixed my purse.” I gave my Daddy a big hug. “Thank you Daddy! I love you.”
Dad’s reply. “You’re welcome honey. You look beautiful. Have a good time.”
On the arm of my date, as I stepped out the front door wearing my poofy black satin dress with my treasured Dad given and repaired evening purse over my shoulder, I turned back to smile at Daddy, our eyes met in our special love, my knowing of his pride in me and my respect for and trust in him.
My Dad has been gone four years, memories often come to me of all the special ways that he treated me that instilled his pride, love and created my self-worth as a woman. That imprinted, taught and showed me how I want, need, must be treated by any man and most certainly ‘the special man’ in my life.
Those moments of love, respect and pride that my Dad instilled in me created my worth. My Father, a master engineer and builder who built the Valdez terminal in Alaska, refineries and nuclear power plants around the world, this former Navy man, pro-baseball player, pilot, yachtsman, golfer, intellectual giant, leader in his industry, accomplished masculine towering man, sat in his kitchen late on a Saturday afternoon foregoing sports on TV, with tools and a needle and thread and worked on my purse, until it was fixed perfectly for me, his precious blessed to be his daughter, because this man of so many worldly accomplishments knew his most prized and devout duty was that of being a Father.
Recently, I reconnected in friendship with my first college boyfriend and he told me how the talks with my Dad and the way in which he observed my Father treating me, molded him as a man throughout his whole life. That he observed a man protective of his daughter and that he knew, that I knew, my Dad, while being tough on me in order to stretch and to build my character, at the same time, would always protect me. He recalled that even as immature as he was at nineteen, that when I took hold of his arm, even though I was strong, independent, out going and capable, that I expected him to protect me. And I do recall, this young man did protect me. He also told me after knowing me at eighteen, nineteen and not having seen me since I was twenty… and us now meeting up again decades later… that my Dad would be impressed and proud of the woman I have become. That I have femininity filled with my Dad’s strength of character and intelligence. And that he knew in a relationship that I must feel safe with a man because I felt safe with my Dad because that is the world he created for me. What a compliment and a blessing to have him share this with me.
On the flip side of this…My Dad wasn’t perfect and he also left negative imprints for me to see clearly, to break against, understand and to grow past. Because of his perfectionism and great accomplishments, while feeling loved, I also had the imprint on me that if I wasn’t perfect, I was not worthy of love. Dad was tough on me, and held me accountable and would turn cold even harsh and withholding, when I displeased him and when those times occurred, I felt rejected, ugly, dumb, and unloved. So all my life I have been dealing with this imprint. Interesting, huh? As much as my Father’s imprint on me was that I was protected and loved…there was also the imprint that if I wasn’t perfect, I was not worthy of love. Part of the duality on this planet and my growth to recognize and overcome to achieve wholeness.
As I have grown into life and full awareness, everything my Dad was as a Father, role model and teacher continues to incorporate fully in me and my psyche… both the positive and the negative. And I am fortunate that the tough way he dealt with me, at times, and the way that he held me accountable, created strength in me enough to have the tools to grow past his negative imprints. When you recognize the humanity in your parents is when you heal your wounds. What a blessed gift.
A Dad leaves his mark on the world by the love he gives his children along with many others as this gift floods out into the world.
A Father creates self-worth or not, in his children in everything that he does; by example, by actions, by words, and by unspoken looks.
My Father was the example of a fine, great, generous, provider, a giver, a protector and even a fixer of chain woven with satin on a purse that created a memory in my heart that will last forever.
In the later years of my Father’s life, he shared many deep feelings with me about his life, his choices, and about his love for me that revealed clearly his deep love for me, so that could release more of the pieces of that imprint that I am not worthy of love unless I am perfect.
Happy Father’s Day to my Father who is now in Heaven looking over me. Thank you for the gift of you in my life.
Ladies, don’t ever settle for less than your worth… Every woman, if she was fortunate to have a good Father, deserves a man that treats her accordingly. This is the blessed gift of a great man and Father, he knew in his soul the worth of women.
Also, the way a child observes the way their parents treat one another provides the standard with which they either will emulate or break against in their own relationships .
Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church,
In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.
Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
—The way a man treats women defines his character, his soul, and his life.
Jesus loved and respected women.
We are all perfect in God our Father’s eyes. As our Fathers on earth define and polish us, in some people’s eyes, their Father on earth defines how they think God deals with, or thinks of them, defining spiritual connection of peace, worth and security in self. And this is another reason the Fathers of this world are so important.
Happy Father’s Day to all you great men in the world!