Today you celebrate sixty years of being alive! I know before I came you were so many things to so many people. A son to parents who are proud of you, a friend to friends who could never replace you, a husband to a woman who adores you.
But to me, you've always just been Daddy. The word itself doesn't seem to have enough impact to actually describe everything you are. My best friend. My mentor. My role model. My reality check. My strongest, most loyal supporter. You are the constant voice on the other end of the phone.
In a world that always had expectations about what little girls should wear, about what things teenage girls should do, and about where women in the workplace belong- you were the rock by my side that always said, "you're perfect just the way you are".
You taught me to fish when other girls were at ballet. You were driving sheep across the country, taking me to national sales when other girls were at prom. When I decided to pursue a male dominated career, in a male dominated industry, you didn't bat an eye.
When I succeed, you nod your head in approval, and quietly smile- giving me the impression you never doubted it.
When I fail, you open your arms in comfort, and the turn me back in the right direction to try again.
From the time I took my first steps, to the day I walked into my first office, to the night you walked me down the aisle you've been a constant source of comfort and support.
And now I have gotten to watch you become something even greater than Daddy-- you've become Papa Jim. And nothing has brought me more joy than watching you with my boys.
I see the way your eyes sparkle when we talk about Maddie, your first Grand daughter who will be here in September. And my heart fills with pure happiness when I think of my brother getting to see you with his little girl, the same way I see you with my boys.
Everyone who knows you can speak to the trueness of your heart and I hope today brings you pure joy as your family and friends all think of you, and send you birthday wishes!
Happy birthday Daddy, I love you!