Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Backrides


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, http://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 came from a session in the early spring two years ago on a farm in Ohio. The young teen loved riding on her dad’s back even though she was almost too big for him to carry her easily. Watching the dad try to hold her still for the photo reminded me of Meagan when she was young and loved to cling to me. First she would sit on my shoe and ride it as I walked. When she became too heavy for that she graduated to my shoulders, and then eventually my back. I remember one afternoon when she was four I carried her on my back up Stone Mountain. Back then I was glad she was once more getting too big for this back ride up the mountain to become a habit. Now, 13 years later, I wish I could still do it. I think one of the hardest things for a dad to do is to let go of the affectionate play he once enjoyed with his daughter while still in her youth.

On the cover of my first book Why a Daughter Needs a Dad there is a photo of a letter I wrote for Meagan and dropped off at her school while on my way to the airport on a business trip. It said “I love you more than peanut butter, sunshine and ice cream.” Since then it has been a little saying I offer her from time to time. In the letter she gave me for my birthday she signed it “I love you more than peanut butter, sunshine and shoes!” If you knew my daughter you would understand that is a LOT.

Yesterday I got a copy of a great letter from a dad in NY that he gave to his daughter when she was 21 and finishing college. It included a list of 30 principles he taught her. Here are the top ten:

“Yesterday, I made a list of some of the most important things we have discovered together. As one of your teachers I want you to know that I give you A+ magna cum laude. You have truly mastered each of these principles and I know they are now a deep part of who you are. If you keep these principles with you throughout life, you have little left to learn:

1. You always get started by taking the first step.
2. Every experience in life is positive – if you learn from it.
3. Don’t be stifled by something that isn’t working. There is always another way.
4. Your way can be as unique as you are. Have the courage to explore something new.
5. Time used wisely multiples the results.
6. One plus one can equal three.
7. Value the judgments of those you respect. But value most the judgments you make of yourself.
8. Advice from others is useful only if it helps you clarify your own opinion.
9. Painful moments are just God’s way of letting us know He has something better in mind.
10. Rejection of your spirit by others is their unfortunate loss. Pray for them.”

Now aren’t those great?! I’d love to tell you more, but then again, I want you to buy the book, too. Read the other 20 principles in Daddy’s Little Girl next spring!

A friend of mine whose story I posted in part on an earlier entry sent this to me: “You always end your blog with, ‘go out and hug somebody.’ Here is a HUG from me to you. It was neat seeing my words on today's blog. I called my parents and told them to read it.” Thanks Andrea, got it!

Well, I guess that’s enough for today. Thanks so much for visiting my blog. Now go out and hug somebody! Maybe two people.

1 comment:

janine said...

thank you for asking for me to contribute... like most girls go to their mom when they need help or advice... my dad has always been the one i've run to. it's funny you ask me, because i just got off the phone with him minutes ago.