I wasn’t as great a dad as I thought

I have a son and three daughters. I did the baseball and hockey things with my son, but the girls were different. With my son I kinda got all the boy stuff out of my system.

I always figured I was a pretty good parent. But the reality is, I spent most of my time with my business and pretty well neglected my daughters. Even when I was with them, my mind was somewhere else. I didn’t mean to be, but somehow I missedreally knowing them and being close to them. I’m not sure why I’m like this. There’s no one to blame or anything. It just always seemed hard — relationships. Deep down I’m kindof a recluse. People think I’m outgoing but I fight to interact with people. I hate that about myself. It’s lonely sometimes, really lonely.

My two older daughters are moved out now. Morgan is 26 and Lauren is 24. Now that they’re gone I realize how little I really got to know them. I miss them terribly.  I can’t get the time back that I lost when they were young.  My excuse was that we didn’t have a lot of money, but we could have gone camping, we could have gone to museums. There’s tons of free stuff we could have done.

Having my daughters got me to realize a lot about myself. I have sadness but I also have tremendous joy.  If I never had the girls, I’m not sure I would be “feeling” much.  Somehow, they gave me permission to play.

I was always so serious and formal. But my daughters got me to sing and to act silly.

There were the moments when I’ve hated the person I was, sometimes mean or angry. But that wasn’t me. They called me on it. They challenged me. My daughters challenged me to be a better person. I’m so proud of them.  I realize how incredibly lucky I am to have girls. I love my daughters. I hope they know that.

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