I am my father’s daughter.
I’m not sure if that’s a saying in English or Spanish, but my family uses it (or a variation thereof) quite a bit when trying to say that the child is very much like one of his/her parents: “He is so her child!” “You are completely your father’s daughter.”
I am my father’s daughter.
In the aftermath of attending the Dad 2.0 Summit I’ve been thinking about that, about how like my father I can be, how he influenced the person that I am. Growing up you rail against your parents’ influence, over their perceived power in your life. And many of us didn’t want to be like them, used that as a goal. My father and I bumped heads a lot, both of us were very strong-willed. And alike, let’s not forget that we were very alike. I learned a lot from him, some of which I try to pass along to my nieces and nephews.
Never let anyone tell you you’re wrong when you’re right. He taught me to stand up for myself. To defend what I believe and know to be true. That sometimes the cost is worth the argument. That you can’t let others abuse you or abuse their power over you.
It doesn’t matter what other people think. Brene Brown often says “you aren’t the jackass whisperer” (or something like that). If someone is determined to have prejudices against you, to think that you are dumb because you speak with an accent or have brown skin (and treat you accordingly), you’re not going to change their minds. Focus your energy on doing your job, do it well, and move on.
You can get anything you want, if you work for it. My father believed that all you need is drive, determination and hard work to get the life you wanted. He made choices based on those goals. He taught me that there aren’t any shortcuts, and very often you’ll think about giving up long before you achieve what you wanted.
And so on, and so on and so on… I learned a lot from my father. I am the person I am in large part because of his influence, his lessons. It’s nice to remember that.
About the conference
I’m not sure I would have attended the Dad 2.0 Summit if it hadn’t been held in Houston. I don’t think I actually believed that a “daddy bloggers” conference is something I would find interesting, or useful. I was wrong. I was very very wrong.
The conference was well-attended with some fabulous bloggers from across the country. A few hundred men, and (yes) a few women too, who were passionate about their topics, good writers, good conversationalists and wonderful people. Many of the bloggers were clear that they were “a blogger who happens to be a Dad.” And many were were articulate on topics that I usually hear from the Mom’s side.
There were conversations happening about the focus of brands on mothers when fathers have a lot of say in purchases, the reality that there’s a big group of primary-care fathers out there that hadn’t been represented, and the concerns they all have about raising children who are bright, happy and healthy. It was wonderful.
And the speakers, I could actually gush like a fan-girl about the speakers. I summarized my favorites via Storify (see the list below), but there just wasn’t enough time to attend all of the sessions I wanted to attend.
The biggest takeaway was the level of commitment these men have to being fathers, and to being good fathers. Mainstream media and news so often glorify the opposite, the deadbeat dads and the criminals and the louses. It was an enlightening experience to see a large group of men who exemplify and are ambassadors for the wonderful qualities of fatherhood that I see in my brothers-in-law, and saw in my father.
I think I would go to this again, if my schedule and resources permitted attending.
Some Storify conversation summaries you might find interesting from the conference:
Special thanks to the wonderful sponsors who made the conference possible:
- Dove Men+Care, dovemencare.com
- Honda, automobiles.honda.com
- Kraft Cheese, kraftcheese.com
- ReadySetEat by ConAgra Foods, readyseteat.com
- The National Milk Mustache “got milk?®” Campaign, MilkMustache.com
- Sears Auto Center, SearsAuto.com
- TurtleWax®, turtlewax.com
- Buffalo Bayou Brewing Co., buffbrew.com
- Ella’s Kitchen 100% organic baby + kid food, ellaskitchen.com
- Jamba Juice, jambajuice.com
- Kidde Fire Safety, kidde.com