Friday, February 22, 2008

Fathers and Daughters

I love my father!!! I mean, I REALLY, REALLY love my father! I cannot express how blessed I am to have watched him grow into the man that he is today! I cannot thank God enough for even allowing my father the grace to be in my life the way he is today…it wasn’t always so easy…
…I spent the majority of my life with my father. I have many of his mannerisms and I definitely have his sarcastic sense of humor…my eyes belong to him as well as my forehead…and the afro that forms after I go for even a month without a haircut, that’s all Carl!

This past Saturday, February 16, I had the opportunity to share my life with my father with about 50 middle school students within the Hampton school district as they sat, dressed in their best, having dinner beside their fathers. I commend Valerie Patin, Courtney Fields and the staff of the Northampton Recreation Center for their vision when it comes to the betterment of young people, our little sisters in particular. By hosting events such as their first annual Father/Daughter Banquet at the Northampton Community Center here in Hampton, they are aiding in the continued growth and development of these beautiful girls. It was a delightful time and I am most grateful to have received the opportunity to speak to both fathers and daughters about my relationship with my father, Carl Ligon, and about the importance of the relationship between kings and princesses!

After watching my father struggle over the years with alcoholism, financial irresponsibility and other life changes, I can say that he is one of the greatest influences in my life. His tenacity and strength have afforded me lessons that I have never learned in school and through his interaction with others, including with the police, various women and employers, I’ve learned how to (and how to not) communicate with those that I come into contact with. His honesty and ability to be transparent taught me the importance of the being same. Whether right or wrong, he stood tall. His integrity is matchless and because of his life, I am definitely the woman that I am today.

I can only pray that the young ladies that I spoke with will remember my father and me when they get to be my age. I pray that they recognize the humanness that is within not only their fathers, but mothers as well and all adults as they mature in age and make that they will make allowance for the things that their parents might do that they don’t necessarily agree with.

I pray that these parents can continue to be the leaders in the lives of these young women and that they might be transparent in allowing their children to see that they are indeed human…and not so perfect. I pray that the lines of communication have been opened and will remain open, strengthening the relationships and ultimately strengthening families! Amen!
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