My parents are my biggest heroes, and while it may sound cliche, it is not meant to be.
I am unable to identify a single individual who can compare to my parents regarding the sacrifices they have made just so that I may be able to realize my own dreams. I use to take the love of my parents for granted, but I learned quickly that while I had the comfort of a loving home and caring family, it was not the norm for many individuals.
As I get older, I realize each day that my world is a better place because of mom and dad. I want to allow this post to serve as an open letter to my parents:
I cannot state enough how much your encouragement has meant to me over the years. From birth you have watched over me, and stood in the gap when I felt I did not have the strength to stand on my own. You are indeed, the world’s greatest dad. To date, I am constantly reminded what I mean to you, as without hesitation you always answer my calls with “hello the greatest son in the world.” It is a statement that I attempt each day to live up to. I live everyday to be the best son a father could ever ask for. How do I do this? I try to live my life walking in your footsteps.
You are the epitome of what it means to be a father. You never wavered in your commitment to your children. Some of my firsts in this life, have been with you. I flew my first toy plane, because you took the time to build me one. Because of you I have the luxury of dreaming big. You taught me the value of patience. Whenever I got frustrated you taught me never let it get the best of me. You are the calm voice of reason in many of my biggest decisions.
You dad are my hero. You fix the impossible. I remember growing up watching McGuyver and thought he was nowhere as good as you were, and still are. No matter what was broken at home, you had a magical way of fixing it, and still do. I watched you devise a method to remove a car engine on your own. I saw you drive a car where the gas pedal failed; you manufactured a way to control the car with a set of strings. To this day, I still don’t know how you did it. I have watched you play a piano by just listening to songs you hear. What amazes me was that you never had lessons to teach you to play the piano. You dad, are a genius! I can only imagine the things you could have done had you received the same educational opportunities as I did.
If I can be only half the man that you are, my life would be worth it.
You represent the gold standard of what it means to be a disciplinarian. You were always the strict voice that taught me valuable lessons in my youth. You worked nonstop to ensure that your children were never in need. I remember first hand how you would be the first to wake up every morning to ensure that we had a healthy breakfast before heading out to school. I would be remiss to not mention how I hated drinking tea every morning, but you made it mandatory. Now drinking tea is one of my favorite endeavors. Ironic, isn’t it?
I value the fact that every evening I came home you examined my school work, seeing what accomplishments and failures I had for the day. You counted all my scores, and insisted I never settle for anything less than my best. In the 6th grade I recall bringing home a score of 95 out of 100. I expected commendation, but you insisted that it wasn’t good enough. You demanded I do better. To improve was always your insistence. In the ignorance of my youth I saw it as harsh, but in hindsight I see the reason for the drive I have today. You exemplified a work ethic that taught me never to blame others for my own shortfalls, but instead seek ways to maximize my strengths and learn from those who are smarter than I am.
When dad lost his job, I saw the toll it took on the family. In our moment of despair, I heard you sobbed quietly at nights as you worried about the future of your children. You did what needed to be done in the lowest of times. You took jobs where you were mistreated, but remained hopeful because you were providing for your children. I remember when you worked for a manager who insisted that he never wanted his children to have contact with your own. He refused to let you drive us in the same car as his children, but look at us now mom! We survived, I earned not one, but 4 college degrees. Life has a way of turning things around, and it certainly turned around for us for the better.
The space here does not provide me ample opportunity to indicate just how blessed I am to have you in my life. You demonstrate what motherhood means. You stand out as a hero in my book, and a hero to the many other lives you have touched by dedicating your life unselfishly to the service of others. You are a true humanitarian.
My life has been touched greatly by the role you both played and continue to play in my life. I wish I could give you the world. You both deserve to walk the red carpet every day of your lives. Your names deserve to be imprinted and displayed among the worlds greatest. I pledge to continue living my life as a testimony of your investment in me. Know that you both are an inspiration to many, and your lives have been imprinted on the hearts of countless individuals.
Mommy and daddy, I love you unconditionally.
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