contact Michelle

For more information about any resources I have to offer, please contact me here!  I'd love to hear from you!


Portland, OR
USA

I exist to help dads learn to communicate and engage with their young adult daughters.  I provide resources from my vast amounts of research and experience with dads and daughters, and this is the place where you'll find the tools you need to become the hero you've always wanted to be.

Blog

Dear Dad...What I Wish I'd Said to You Years Ago

Michelle Watson

Dear Dad....png

We’re just one week away from Father’s Day, and today I’m inviting you into my personal, vulnerable space by letting you read this heartfelt letter I wrote to my dad for Father’s Day a couple of years ago. And rest assured that much of what he’s done to invest in me over the years were things that I wasn’t necessarily thinking were significant at the time. That part came later. I trust this will encourage you dads to keep staying the course as you make forever deposits in your daughter’s life, choosing to believe that the day will come when she will look back and remember.

Dear Dad…
Sometimes the beauty of growing older means that things look different from this angle. I know I’ve thanked you for your consistent investment in my life many times over the years, but this year I want to highlight some things that maybe I’ve not fully appreciated until now.

Thank you…
…for choosing, along with mom, to let my birth happen. Even after finding out that you were pregnant with me before you were married, you took the high road and allowed for me to be born. People weren’t open about those things in 1960 and I am deeply grateful that you chose life.

Thank you…
…for letting me fall asleep on your chest, even as a newborn, because apparently it was one of the only places I could settle down.

Thank you…
…for getting on the floor to wrestle with me, lifting me “high in the sky,” and actually enjoying our time together while we laughed and played even after you’d had a long day at work.

Thank you…
…for taking me to the park and hiding coins in the bark dust, letting me believe that it all magically appeared out of nowhere, which made me feel like the richest girl on the block (now that I think about it, I still am).

Thank you…
…for making up bedtime stories while we girls placed an imaginary “thinking cap” on the top of your head, an enchanted hat by which the all-time best stories were birthed from you because you loved seeing your girls giggle, imagine, and dream.

Thank you…
…for going the extra mile to build unique and spectacular things that made your daughter’s childhood a bit better---like putting wheels on a milk crate and attaching handlebars to the top so we had an incredible, one-of-a-kind scooter that was the envy of the neighborhood to putting a light bulb inside our kitchen cupboard which transformed it into the most fantastic fort that ever existed.

Thank you…
…for years of courageously accepting your role as the infamous “cutter-of-my-bangs.” And for the record, I do forgive you for the innumerable times that the final result turned out less than we’d hoped for due to my cowlick. My fifth grade school photo, however, doesn’t feel the same way.

Thank you…
…for making it a priority to lead our annual all-day trek to find the perfect Christmas tree two hours away while creating a fun tradition of singing songs at the top of our lungs in the car, songs that still make Christmas special when I hear them. (“I saw mommy kissing Santa Claus” and “All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth” were two of our greatest hits, don’t you think?)

 
 

Thank you…
…for creating memories with us girls that were 180 degrees different from what your dad did with you (or more accurately, didn’t do with you), making a concerted effort to walk in the opposite direction of the hand you were dealt while investing time and energy to be a dialed-in dad.

Thank you…
…for taking me on my first date to the Rheinlander restaurant when I was 16 and making me wait in the car until you came around and opened the door, telling me that you wanted me to never settle for a guy who didn’t do the same.

Thank you…
…for recusing me on the freeway when my car broke down and all I could do was cry, never lecturing me or making me feel embarrassed for not being more courageous, strong or mature.

Thank you…
…for wiping my tears and rescuing me when my heart was broken down after a breakup…or two…or three…and reminding me that any guy who’d have the privilege of dating me would be the lucky one.

Thank you…
…for repairing every broken thing inside and outside my house that has ever needed your inventive, inexpensive, impressive, and ingenious fixes.

Thank you…
…for taking me to Nordstrom for the past 25+ years at Christmastime where together we’ve smelled more scents than we could ever count while creating one of the best traditions ever: Perfume Day! Every bottle that you’ve bought me is a fragrant reminder of your love for me, a love that sacrificially enjoys spoiling me in a way that says I’m valued in a big, big way.

Thank you…
…for never giving up on me and for your ongoing pursuit of a relationship with me that’s been consistent throughout my entire life, even with all my emotional up’s and down’s and even during times where we’ve bonked heads and disagreed, always showing me that a dad’s love lasts through it all.

Dad, I know that words can’t truly express how much I love you, but from the depths of my heart I want you to know that you mean the world to me! And in case I don’t tell you enough, just remember again today how grateful I am for every single deposit you’ve made in my life through the years, big and small.

Happy Fathers Day, Dad!