Blog Post

A Daddy's Girl Forever

As I recount the memories of my dad through the eyes of a “daddy’s girl,” a smile easily forms. I will always be a “daddy’s girl,” even though my father has gone to be with Jesus. If you are a “daddy’s girl” too, you will know exactly what I mean. A “daddy’s girl” is a daughter who will always be “the apple of dad’s eye!” In her mind she is sure that daddy “hung the moon.” No matter how small in stature he is, a “daddy’s girl” knows with certainty her dad always has her back and will catch her when she falls.

A father teaches his daughter so many things. My dad taught me to be myself. He never tried to be a square peg in a round hole. He never bent or ever blended. He was comfortable in his own skin and lived life as himself. As a “daddy’s girl”, I learned to sing in the rain, dance through the storms of life and never apologize for being different. This unshakable confidence took me airborne as a stewardess at just nineteen, even though I was too young and too short. “High hopes” flew me through the airwaves as a radio co-host and television speaker, gave me the confidence to publish my “Wow Mom Bible Study: A Walk with God” and the courage to host Wow Mom podcasts on YouTube.

My daddy taught me about my Heavenly Father’s love, through his love. It built my faith and hope in a holy God who loves us no matter what. This confidence in God gave me the drive needed to view life as an adventure. My hope, like my Dad’s, is in a “Big God” who never fails! What a faith-filled ride it has been. This hope has given me the wings to fly thru life’s tough spots and to climb every mountain life presents. He taught me to do little things greatly and to do great things with grace and ease.

My dad, who was both a nuclear chemist and an artist, taught me that “life is an empty canvas! You can paint on it anything you want to paint.” He encouraged me with the words, “Ellen, I think you should paint a masterpiece!” On my journey through life, I have come to realize my daddy was right. Life is an empty canvas, and everyone has the choice to paint whatever they want to paint. As for me, I want to paint a masterpiece.

Dad’s pass so much down to their daughter, that once they leave this earth a part of them remains behind. Their life is lived through those life lessons and memories. Maybe those life lessons began to take root the day of my kindergarten graduation ceremony. My family was running late, so we left my mom behind to get my younger siblings out of the car. As Dad took my hand heading toward the auditorium, I secured my cap with my other hand as we sprinted together. As I neared the door, I was shocked to see that my classmates had already processed in and were seated on the stage. A tear ran down my face. I was sad that I had missed the moment, but daddy knew just what to do. He always did! He gave me an encouraging nod and said, “Ellen, go get on that stage!” Those words gave me the confidence I needed, as I processed in with boldness and pride onto the stage, alone but unafraid. I found my seat among the graduation class and my sadness turned into joy! As my name was called, I walked up to receive my kindergarten diploma. Dad was “the wind beneath my wings” and saved the day.

However, I never felt more like my “daddy’s girl” than on my wedding day. Family and friends from around the country gathered at Key Biscayne, Florida on May 1, 1974 at sunset by the ocean. The view was breath taking as the groomsmen rolled out the white carpet, then the bridesmaid and flower girl all dressed in yellow processed down the aisle. Daddy was my escort, just like on that kindergarten graduation day so long ago. This time I took his arm instead of his hand. All the butterflies left me as we processed down the aisle, boldly and unafraid. This time dad got me to the monumental occasion on time. Joy was again the wind beneath my wings. I was flying toward the future of a lifetime together with the man I love. It had seemed like a lifetime, waiting for the wedding day to arrive, but at that moment, time stood still. I think it was God’s way of planting the memory in my heart forever. I was so ready to marry the man of my dreams. I felt so safe, so proud, and so loved by my dad. With the ocean blue as our backdrop, I continued toward my groom. Everything was picture perfect. Suddenly stopping dead in his tracks, yet sporting a grin, daddy looked me straight in the eyes, and I knew something was wrong

I could detect a fatherly concern in his voice as he said, “Ellen, where is the music?” The music? I had forgotten the music! Our picture-perfect wedding day could have been shattered, but as always, daddy knew just what to do. Without skipping a beat, he began to sing, “Dom, dom, ta, dom…” My heart was full of joy, as I joined in the melody harmonizing with him. I squeezed his arm and he squeezed mine. I was never more proud of my dad, than at that moment. My father always knew best! He always brought the music and the high hopes.

When we reached my groom, Dad proudly placed my arm in Patrick’s and a calming peace took over my heart. I knew everything was going to be all right. Being “daddy’s girl” had prepared me to be Pat’s wife. I knew Pat would be a man that I could love and trust, a man I could count on to have my back. He like daddy would always catch me if I fell. As the sun set over the horizon and we exchanged our “I do’s,” I felt my groom “hung the moon.”

I will always be a “daddy’s girl”! On this Father’s Day, I thank my Heavenly Father that my earthly father handed down high hopes to me. Now I pass those same high hopes down to my children. What words of wisdom has your dad handed down to you? This Father’s Day be sure and honor your father for being the father God has given you. Dad’s out there, my hat is off to you! I encourage you to give your daughters wings, high hopes, and an unshakable faith. Daughters need dads to look up to. In their eyes, you are a giant of a man, a superhero who wears an invisible cape, and protects her from all harm. A dad they look up to and think “hung the moon!”

©Ellen Mongan