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  • My dad is my best friend. Whenever I'm feeling down or unsettled I can go to him and everything just feels better. I don't know exactly what it is that makes everything better but I can always count on my dad to make me feel at home and safe. He is the glue that keeps my family together and I feel special because he is my dad. He is unique and crazy and I hope that those qualities have rubbed off on me. He doesn't care what anyone thinks which I feel is one of the most important life skills you can acquire. After spending 27 years with my dad I am finally starting to understand how I can truly be myself.

    After graduating high school my dad went to Dartmouth University. Two years later he decided to enlist in the air force where he spent two tours of duty in the Vietnam War as special ops. He was then stationed in Ohio where he finished his undergrad degree at Ohio State and went on to do his masters there. Years later he moved to Canada, met my mom and had my brother, me and my twin sister.

    As I mentioned before the safest place in the world is in my dad's arms. So naturally my favorite thing to do is watch the Ohio State football games with him. I don't particularly like football but I wouldn't miss one game. Those were the best Saturday afternoons and evenings.

    Five years ago my dad died of kidney cancer. With the help of my family he fought hard to live another 5 months with us. The day he passed was the worst day of my life. I lost my confidant, my friend and worst of all I lost the person who made everything better. My life didn't make sense anymore and I would have to learn how to live without him. It took me about two years to stop feeling sad about loosing my dad. In the process I had started to reflect on my dad's life, his sickness and him as a father. I had come to realize what an incredible man he was and how truly privileged I was to have him as my dad. He lived his life for his kids. I recall one of the harder conversations I had with my dad while he was sick. He said to me that he didn't spend enough time with us and that was his only regret. I sat there, holding back my tears, and told him that he was crazy. My dad would drop anything for us (although he was perpetually late from picking us up at school when we were young).

    I wanted to write this story to always remember how he makes me feel. To remember those cool fall days sitting on the couch with him watching football and relishing in the simplicity of true happiness. I hope to one day feel that way again with my daughter and I strive to be exactly how he was with me with her.
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