My Dad

Sherry Sturgeon's father, Blaine Underhill, celebrates his birthday with his five grandchildren.

by Sherry Sturgeon

My first crush was on my dad. I thought he was the strongest, funniest, most hard working man around. Sure, he was stern at times when I was growing up. And yes, there were days I would almost be afraid of him and any punishment I might be due; but as quick as that fear appeared it was gone again. I knew he loved me even if he didn’t say it aloud. He didn’t have to. He showed me. And still does.

I’ve always had a unique relationship with my father. Different than my sisters and brother it seemed. I was the one who could curl up on his lap and scratch his beard and get almost whatever I wanted out of him. Even now as a grown mother of two, I still can’t leave his home without trying to rub his head or act out with him in some way. That’s just what we do. That’s just us.

My daughters are enjoying a special relationship with him now. That special bond has carried over to the next generation and it brings me such gratitude. They get to share these experiences that shaped me into who I am today. The endless tormenting. The hours of story-telling. The treat sharing. The feeling of comfort. They have it all.

Dad leaves an impression on people. Always has. Always will. I would not change my experiences with him for anything. He is stubborn, close-minded at times, opinionated, long-winded, competitive and down right cranky sometimes. But he’s also good-hearted, caring, helpful, funny and determined. And all this mixed together makes for a great dad.

Every Christmas we have to find creative ways to wrap his gifts because every present gets poked and shaked before they are opened and a guess as to what is inside is announced. And nine times out of 10 he is right.

Every Easter he sits in his recliner rocker with Easter eggs hidden around him as his five grandchildren climb all over him looking for them. And every year he smiles the whole time.

Every summer he toasts the best wieners on an open fire that anyone ever could for me, his grandchildren and all the other young kids sitting around. He’s done this every summer for as long as I can remember … and they are worth the wait because according to Dad “the coals have to be just right.”

These are just a few of the traditions that make up life with my dad. Traditions that will be remembered for generations to come. Traditions I have enjoyed my entire life. Traditions I will remember forever and cherish in my heart always. Love you Dad, Happy Father’s Day.

Sherry Sturgeon lives in Barnettville, NB with her husband and two daughters. An employee of the federal government, in her spare time she enjoys reading, writing, watching racing, and spending the summers camping and playing washers with her father and family.