An Interview With My Father

I haven’t relied on a single person more than my father to help, guide, and tell me the painful {usually colorful} truth. He has never let me down. Not a single time. He has managed decades of stress, responsibility, and life in the role of Dad. This Father’s Day, the day we honor all fathers, I interviewed my dad, and his responses were full of wisdom and advice for my generation of moms. 

My father and I share a similar trait – you’ll probably hear us before you see us. Truth be told, we are alike in a lot of ways, which unites us and at times makes us get very loud with each other! This has forged a bond that runs deep; that is real. We get each other.

As the only daughter of three children, it goes without saying that I was a daddy’s girl. I’d stand anxiously by the window waiting for him to come home from work. I’d sit near him after late shifts while he was napping, just to be the first to get his attention. I did well in school, stayed out of trouble and made good choices with the simple mantra I’d hate to disappoint Dad, He would kill me. In short, I idolized him.

My father is the self-made man. He’s a man of street smarts, calculated risks, and a strong belief in hard work. He also has some of the best one-liners and colorful word choices you’ll ever hear! After he met my mother and had three children in quick succession, he worked painfully long hours to make ends meet. He napped when he could during the day, picked up extra shifts, and provided for his family. In hindsight, I realize now there were times we didn’t have much by comparison, but my parents gave us everything we NEEDED and taught us to VALUE receiving those things. I can’t remember ever really “wanting” anything as a child because I didn’t think to. I wasn’t raised like that. I understood long hours, sacrifices, discipline and doing the right thing for those you love.

*Dad, what was the hardest thing about raising kids and working full time crazy hours?

Working all the time and missing the time with you guys growing up. You used to stand at the window waiting for me to come home all the time, and it was the happiest and saddest moment every day.You just can’t get that time back, so choose wisely.

*What do you wish you could tell your younger self about being a father?

Don’t worry so much about things always being right or the way you think things should be in your head. Enjoy life more. Let it happen. It goes by so fast!

*How is being Dido {Grandpa} different than being Dad?

That’s EASY! I can spoil my granddaughter as much as I want and not worry about it because that’s your job!

How has your role as a father today changed compared to when you were a young father?

Now I can enjoy it more and watch you guys go through life on your own. I get to experience the good and the bad with all of you, and still be there if you guys need me! Being there to help my kids always… to me that is the joy of being a father.

*What do you wish I would do differently? What advice do you have for me?

Don’t worry so much! Just keep trying your best. Enjoy the good and the bad as much as possible; you only get one chance and I’m telling you, things always work out. You’ve had some of the worst luck of anyone I know, but I promise it will work out.

*Are my daughter and I alike in any way? If so, what should I know to make sure she doesn’t win!?

Oh you will have a little problem there… she is already ahead of you in lots of ways because you let her think she is in charge! Be the boss!

*One more… What’s your favorite memory of us as kids!?

Honestly, it was seeing you around Christmastime and how respectful all of you were. I love seeing how far you guys got with the hard work and the values Mom and I tried to teach you. I’m proud to say it worked.

Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there, and all my love to you, Dad, for all your years of thoughtfulness, guidance and creative cursing…

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Ana T. enjoys sharing her life observations with a healthy dose of humor as she navigates life with her pint size sassy sidekick M {November 2014}. She comes from a loving, loud Croatian family raised in Cleveland, Ohio. In 2008 she made the jump to Houston where she full time practices and teaches optometry. 2014 - 2015 was a blur of survival for her: difficulty conceiving, a rough pregnancy, a seemingly happy marriage shattered in a Lifetime Story–esque way. Being alone as full-time single parent/career woman with a newborn living miles away from her family definitely wasn't the plan. Despite all this, Ana T. and M are tearing up play spots, eating their way through town, traveling all over, and THRIVING. Ana T. is into trying out and laughing at fitness fads, ridiculous Facebook statusing, and at 34 still searching for ANY craft she could have a smidgeon of talent in {currently it’s knitting… stay tuned}.


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