Monday, April 23, 2007

Apron Strings


I am searching for inspirational stories about father-daughter relationships, stories that share wisdom, teach moral and important life lessons, and give others insight into how to nurture and maintain a healthy, loving and fulfilling father-daughter relationship.

If you are a father or a daughter, I want to hear about your parent-child relationship experiences. For more information about submitting your story, please visit my website, www.gregoryelang.com, and click the red corner on the home page, just beneath the “Projects” tab.

I’m also collecting photos of dads and daughters, artwork from daughters to dad, or nice shots of smiling daughters of all ages to display on this blog. If you’d like to submit one, please email it to greg.lang@mindspring.com.

Now on to today’s diary entry…

Today’s photo is of two sisters dressed in their Halloween costumes, one a bride, the other an angel. They were neighbors of mine until recently; their dad, a good man who is wholly devoted to his family. Go Allen.

I have received several great stories; thanks so much to all for sharing your fond memories with me. It will be the collection of powerful yet sweet memories that make Daddy’s Little Girl a great book. Like this little nugget:

On my wedding day, I stood with my dad, my arm in his, waiting to begin our walk down the aisle. He leaned toward me, and said, “Sis, try to take long strides so I don’t lose my balance”. He was nervous and so was I! We smiled. We were there for each other. I felt loved, valued, and treasured.

We had a block party this weekend and nearly 50 neighbors attended. It was a great chance for Jill and me to meet a few people we didn’t know, and for me to be on the lookout for story opportunities. A great one presented itself. Two adult sisters playfully argued about which was their dad’s favorite daughter; it turns out there are four sisters all together and each considers herself the “favorite.” What a challenge it must have been, and an example of artful diplomacy and creativity, that a dad could make each daughter feel as if she were his favorite. We are planning an interview, all four sisters at once, to share their memories of their father. I can’t wait.

At the same party a dad was telling me of how he is beginning to let his 17 year old daughter drive the car alone, although only when he can follow closely behind to keep an eye on her. I looked at his daughter and while making a scissor cutting motion with my fingers, said “Sounds like we need to cut some apron strings.” She laughed and said, “You’re going to need hedge clippers.”

Here is a little excerpt from one of the daughter-dad stories, one about daddy-daughter dates, I have received:

We walked home slowly; she skipped a bit, and I ran to catch up with her, only for us both to slow down and enjoy a slow stroll. At our corner she suddenly turned and started walking around the block. “Not ready to go home yet?” I asked.

“No,” she replied.

“Want to walk some more?”

“Yes,” she said softly. So we did.

“I love these times with you,” I told her. She didn’t answer but held my hand a little tighter.

When we finally got home, we brushed our teeth and washed our faces to prepare for bed. Shortly, with a sippy cup of milk and a good book about Winnie the Pooh she drifted off to sleep in my arms, ending another excellent date night with my two-year-old daughter.

This reminded me of all the date nights Meagan and I have had, jumping into mounds of nerf balls, eating popcorn at the movies, learning to eat sushi, and eventually teaching her to drive. Now at 17 she would rather date someone else, but I still occasionally get the reassurance I need that she has not outgrown me. Like at the block party when she sat in my lap for a while, and then kissed me in front of everyone before departing to go home.

Well, I guess that’s enough for today. Thanks so much for visiting my blog. Now go out and hug somebody! And send me a story!

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