I asked Brittany Smyth (daughter of Alan) to share with all of us the meaning of what her relationship with her father has meant to her. Brittany is the recipient of the “Prized Possession” conversation we have been hearing and talking about. So, I thought we should hear from her!
Words from Brittany……
When I think about what a father-daughter relationship means to me, and the significance it holds in my life, I am immediately overwhelmed by how much my dad has impacted who I am and who I continue to become. I know you all have seen the words “Prized Possession” over and over again throughout this blog, and right now they may just seem like words to you; perhaps even a silly tagline. To me, they represent a life-long conversation that has taken place between my dad and I. A conversation that has played an integral part in shaping me into the person I am right now. To this day there is only one answer when my dad asks the simple question, “What are you?” Without any hesitation I reply, “prized possession.” It’s second nature. It’s who I am. It’s who I will always be.
As I dissect these words, I realize it’s not the words themselves that are so powerful, it’s the actions behind the words. The actions my dad took to make sure that they were not just empty syllables. Without action there is no meaning, and my dad has made it his life’s mission to show me this. Whether is was coaching my soccer teams, taking me on father-daughter getaways, or just sitting on the couch watching The Bachelor with me, he made it a priority to be a constant figure in my life; and I now realize the biggest gift he ever gave me was being present. He was present during every high and every low. My dreams were his dreams, and he was determined to make every moment count. While we had some really cool experiences together, I now understand that it was not so much what we did that had value, but it was the fact that we did them together. It is the time he invested in me that laid the foundation for me to become a confident woman who knows her worth.
All this to say, if there is one thing that I can tell dads, it is to be PRESENT in your daughter’s life. As a girl, I can tell you that we long to be loved and valued, and in a world that thinks being “perfect” is everything and what you look like defines who you are, it is critical that us girls find our affirmation and validation in the right places. As this blog has mentioned time and time again, we live in a world that jumps at every opportunity to break girls down, and convince them that they are not good enough. Because of this, I truly believe that the father-daughter relationship is the key to empowering our girls to overcome these worldly pressures.
So as I move forward, and continue to explore everything this crazy world has to offer, I will do so with confidence. Confidence in where I came from, who I am, and who I am becoming. It is the kind of confidence that runs deep. The kind that is fostered over a long period of time as a result of the unconditional love from a father. Every girl should be clothed in this type of confidence. Every girl deserves to know she is a Prized Possession.