Dear Daddy,

I need to talk to you for a moment. I'll try to make this quick, and I won't expect a response because I know how difficult it is for you to express your innermost feelings, especially now. Did I ever tell you how much I loved that oak jewelry box you gave me for Christmas when I was thirteen? I probably didn't. I was such a snotnosed brat (your words). This may be a bit awkward for you. I know it's awkward for me.

Remember when I hotwired the Dodge when you and mother went on that trip? I'm sorry the seat caught on fire. I told them not to smoke, really I did. And I don't believe I ever told you how sorry and embarassed I was when I forgot the words to that song I sang at that American Legion show (and after I signed that recording contract, no less). I could have died. I wanted you to be proud, and wouldn't ya just know I'd forget the words to a song I had sung so many times (People-Streisand, remember?). Of course you remember, how could you not, it was so humiliating. What? You don't... recall?

Daddy, did I ever tell you how proud I have always been of you? I don't believe I ever told you that, either. You were always there for me, even when I needed that $1500 to buy into that bogus cosmetic line. You told me it was a sham, and you were right. I don't think I ever thanked you for that. Thank you, Daddy. I probably never apologized either, did I. I'm so very sorry.

Oh yes, and about that Cadillac. Well, we were on the road and all that and well, I guess he just forgot to pay you back. I'm sorry about that also, Daddy. He probably is too, maybe... but for the record? It was a good car. It made him look like the hotshot he thought he was. You were right about him, by the way, but Daddy? He loved playing chess with you. He always said you were the only man who could beat him at it ( 22 wins before he snuck one in, as I recall), but then you were state chess champ, so why would he ever think otherwise? I am and have always been so very proud of you. I remember watching you score a touchdown at the age of 62. You were playing touch football with all my jock cousins at Doheney Beach Park. They still talk about that to this day.

Daddy, why was it so difficult for you to show affection? I always wondered about that, not that it matters. I know you loved me. Remember the rubics cube I gave you that February day so many years ago? Course you remember. It was sitting on your dresser, completely solved. I knew it would be. You never got to see the big beautiful Valentines Day card that was laying next to it... did you, daddy. I still have it, for the record. I carried your wallet with me for a year. It was your affection, and it had pictures of me in it as a small child and as an adult. I never knew you had those there.

I don't know why you had to ride that damn motorcycle that week-end, but you did. It changed all of our lives forever. I've carried you with me for so long now that I wake up with a headache, and daddy? My heart has suffered. I need to let you go now. I know you will still love me.

I decided to write you this letter in honor of Father's Day, because you are and always will be mine, and I will forever hold you in my heart. But I need to be rid of this pain that haunts me, because I need to breathe again. Writing this letter is not an easy thing for me to do, it has taken twenty years. Now I must move on. And to be quite honest, I don't know that I can, but I have to try. You understand? Of course you understand, you've watched me cry for too long now.

And for the record? I am no longer angry with you for changing lanes like that. I guess it was the will of God (although truth be told, I am still ambivalent on that one). I think of you every damn day, and I probably always will.

Do you know that I love you? Surely you must, they were the last words I ever spoke to you before you left this earth. Do you remember? I do. I will always remember...

Happy Father's Day, Daddy

I Love You

Written By My Father's Daughter
"I'll Be Seeing You" Recorded By The Jackie Gleason Orchestra
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