This I Believe

Travis - Lynchburg, Virginia
Entered on December 8, 2006
Age Group: 18 - 30

I believe in my dad. He is the most influential person in my life. As I have grown older I’ve come to realize how much knowledge I have obtained from him. I learn something new each and every day. He is a mountain of a man; his skin like leather and his hands like steel. He has worked for everything he has ever had, even as a child. I can only hope to accomplish half of what he has in my lifetime.

When I was a young child my dad struggled with alcoholism and it was hard for me, as well as my family, to witness. He was under so much pressure working as a dairy farmer and then at a paper plant to make ends meet and support his family. He’d come home tired and dirty almost every night, yet he’d always find a way to smile at me and let me know everything was okay. My dad hid a lot of the struggles he was battling deep inside much like I do now. Everything would catch up to him, as it always does, and it was very hard to see him go through such pain and confusion. He was lost, but God would not allow him to go very far as he would soon break my dad down. His life was changed forever and although it was very difficult seeing the man I looked up to stumble in his walk of life, it gave me the knowledge not to make the same mistake.

Our relationship has always been very close even through the struggles and I wouldn’t trade anything for the morals and values, as well as things of life, that my dad has taught me. He has showed me everything from the value of hard work to how to tie a hook to the end of a fishing line. I’m absolutely positive that you will not find another man who works as hard as my dad. He is just one of those kind of guys that can do pretty much do anything, and I feel really privileged just to be able to watch him do the things he does. It’s amazing to learn the smallest of things from him.

Now as a college student searching for what I want out of life, I find myself looking to my dad for help. I’m becoming more and more like him each and every day and I don’t feel that’s a bad thing. I continue trying to work on making our relationship even better than it is, and I learn something new the more I get to know him. He has provided me with everything I need in life whether it is through questions I have or teaching me how to do something. He is always there and always will be. My only hope is that I make him proud as his son because I believe in my dad.