Daddy’s Little Girls

Much to my father’s disappointment (although he would never admit to having such delusions,) I am having trouble getting this going; searching for the first few lines to begin a dedication to the man who, so far, has made the biggest impact on my life.
He became a father very late in life, marrying my mom, whom he affectionately called his child-bride – 22 years his junior, when he was 44. I was born 13 months later, and by all accounts, I could do no wrong. I don’t recall even one case of corporal punishment, and I remember one raised voice. He carried his girls, my sister and me, on his hip until our legs dragged far too low and my mother became embarrassed. Perhaps it was his age, or maybe it was his character, but my father had unlimited patience and self-control. This, I did not inherit.
He was a newspaper man all his life, owning at one point three weekly papers throughout Southeast Texas. He says publishing is in his blood – and, I believe it. He tried to retire no less than three times, but constantly found himself back in an office, sitting at a desk, looking at a computer screen, before his stroke in October, 2000 forced his hand.
Now from a home office, where even the dreaded diagnosis of Parkinson’s Disease has yet to quench his writer’s palate, he continues to conjure ideas and organize thoughts for that next great story. The eternal optimist and dreamer, my father never loses hope – or faith – that something great is around the corner.
He recently completed a novel about a small-town journalist on the heels of the story of her lifetime. I am helping him type and get the text manuscript-ready. I SO hope this happens for him.
One would think that by the “ripe ‘old age of 80” (I just had to use one of dad’s favorite expressions here,) he would have walked a daughter down the aisle. Knowing his disease is degenerative and he is already experiencing movement problems, he “works out” two-to-three times a day…walking up and down their driveway, back and forth, five times.

My father is a hero of a man, full of interesting facts and historical information. He can talk for hours (and hold your interest,) or sit for hours and just listen. I HAVE NEVER HEARD HIM SAY A BAD THING ABOUT ANOTHER PERSON…how is that possible?
Here is a picture taken of “Daddy and his Girls” at Christmas a few years ago.
 Happy Father’s Day, Dad! I love you.
7 Responses
  1. j

    I love my two boys, but wish I could have had a girl to spoil like I bet your dad spoiled you guys. You seem to have a lot of your father in you Cherrye, so Happy Father’s Day!

  2. Antonino Condorelli

    I want to be like your father. I had a lot from my daddy, but what I want to hear from Mario is what you said about your daddy. Hope I can do it. But I’m not a hero.

  3. Cherrye

    Thank you, Erin.

    J – I am not spoiled…what ever could make you think that?!? (Yea, Peppe doesnt buy it either!)

    Nadine – thank you. That was so very sweet.

    Ciao Antonino – I have no doubt that Mario wont think of his father as a hero! I think you are on the right track!

  4. nyc/caribbean ragazza

    beautiful post. my dad will be 80 next year, mom is 73 and for their generation were “older parents”.

    Does your dad know Chuck Mcdonald? He’s used to be Ann Richards communications director. We called him Big Bubba during the campaign.

  5. sognatrice

    Cherrye, I completely missed this post, but I had to comment and say what a lovely tribute to your dad. He must be beaming with pride đŸ™‚

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