My family lives in Ontario, and I live in British Columbia, which means I miss out on spending most holidays, birthdays, and special occasions with them. Father’s Day is unfortunately no exception. A couple of years ago, I started to write my father a “thank you” note for some Christmas gifts, but it turned into a thank you list, with a much larger scope. I share it again here, with some amendments, to remind my Dad how thankful I am for all of those little gestures of love he has shown me along the way these past 28 years.
Thank you, Dad! I’m sorry I can’t be there in person to celebrate with you.
The following is my list of highest gratitudes and most treasured childhood memories…
- Thank you for being my “pet cow” when I was little and letting me ride on your back and pull you around with a scarf “leash”. I’m not sure why you were a cow and not a horse, but thanks for playing along!
- Thank you for taking me, Jen, and our schnauzer, Pepper, to the special park in Arva — even though Jen or Pepper inevitably ended up in the pond.
- Thank you for playing “the mouse ate my dinner” with me when we had a certain meal. (I would crouch down beside you — being the sneaky little mouse — and as you gestured with a forkful of food in conversation with Mom, I’d pop up and eat it. You would patiently pretend to be shocked and appalled as the mouse stole bite after bite.)
- Thank you for every time you made me mashed bananas with peanut butter or “peek-a-boo apples” (cored apple slices) for breakfast. Bananas and apples, to this day, are my favourite fruits, and I think on some level they’re wired into my palate by childhood nostalgia.
- Thank you for taking me to piano lessons every week (and protecting me from the piano teacher’s evil cat).
- Thank you for taking me to swimming lessons. I’m sorry for scaring you when I didn’t surface right away because I was trying to touch the bottom of the pool during diving practice.
- Thank you for letting me help you make custard for dessert. I only did the stirring, but I felt like WE made it.
- Thank you for putting up the swings in the backyard. We had oodles of fun on those. Even Grandma enjoyed them.
- Thank you for the times you sang “Roamin’ in the Gloamin’” to me before I went to bed. I slept better those nights.
- Thank you for playing the “just one more step back” picture-taking game at the pool. Do you remember this? I was the photographer, and you were my subject posing casually by the pool, but the object of the game was to “trick” you into falling into the pool by getting you to take enough steps backward. (This appealed tremendously to my sadistic sense of humour; I would laugh hysterically at the mere anticipation of you falling into the water!)
- Thank you for taking me to the library on weekends. It sounds so clichéd, but it really did instill a love of books and the written word in me from an early age.
- Thank you for carrying me on your shoulders so Grandma and Grandpa’s dog wouldn’t knock me over when we went to visit them.
- Thank you for sticking quarters to your forehead and then knocking them off by wiggling your eyebrows. I don’t know why, but thank you.
- Thank you for letting me kick you in the backside while you pretended to bend over to tie your shoe in front of me while I was on the swing. (Another favourite game…geez, I was an abusive child!)
- Thank you for paying for my braces. I didn’t appreciate them at the time, but I frequently get compliments on my teeth now because of those babies!
- Thank you for all of the spiders you bravely battled over the years.
- Thank you for understanding that colour-coded sticky tabs were an integral part of my essay-writing process in university and keeping me well-stocked.
- Thank you for cutting out every vegetarian or could-be-vegetarian recipe your local paper publishes, saving them up in a file folder over several years, and then mailing them to me recently! To get an envelope full of yellowed newspaper clippings dating back to 2007 was both thoughtful and amusing.
- Thank you for crying when you take me to the airport after a visit home. It crushes me to see you in tears, and I bawl too, but I’ve never felt so loved.
- Thank you for surviving bypass surgery back in 2002. You showed me that broken hearts could heal. And I don’t know what I would do without you.
“Father’s Day Super Dad Cookies” from Sugar Siren Cakes, Cookies and Cupcakes
Did you enjoy this article?
Please let the author know by leaving them a comment below!
And, subscribe to our free weekly digest!
Simply add your email below. A confirmation email will be sent to you.