I love my dad! He is a manly-man. A great camper and fisherman. He's a die-hard University of Utah Football fan. When I was growing up I loved the fact that my dad got to go to work in jeans and t-shirts. The up-ity people in our neighborhood thought that he didn't have a real job because he didn't wear a suit to work. Apparently making sure that the residents in the city had good, clean, delicious drinking water or being a firefighter for 21 years wasn't a real job. What are those people doing now? Still working? Um my dad was able to retire at 53 years old - he has a great retirement job -- yeah he still gets to wear jeans....
Matt and I were talking the other day about "Girls Camp". Girls Camp is an important part of the youth program in the LDS Church. Girls ages 12-17 are encouraged to go. Ours was in the mountains above a small farming town. It was up the hill from a well known polygamist family that was pretty much bad news!! (No LDS/Mormons are not polygamists) A few times my dad came up to be our Priesthood leader - basically a man to watch over us and to help keep us safe. It was a lot of fun to have my dad there. He was always willing to join in the fun and helped the older girls prank the younger girls.
My first year of camp, when I was 12, he didn't come up. That year the leaders had the dads write a letter to their daughters and they were given to us one night. My dad is not a man of words. He hates talking on the phone and I am sure that writing a letter was not easy for him. I wish I still had that letter. I have no idea what happened to it.
In the letter I do know that my dad referenced this song/poem. He talked about this song a lot when I was growing up. We used to have it on a record album.
TO A SLEEPING BEAUTY
Recorded by Jimmy Dean
Written by L. Markes
Dear daughter, I tiptoed in your room tonight and I looked down at
you smilin' in your sleep. You were so lovely my heart nearly broke;
and I thought how much like Sleeping Beauty a little girl is. When I
tuck you in at night I never know how old you'll be when you wake. One
evening you crawl on your dad's lap and throw your arms around his neck,
the next morning you might be much too grown up for that sort of thing.
You're so quickly approaching the awkward age, too young to drive the
car and yet too old to be carried in the house half asleep on daddy's
shoulder. I have a secret that I've never told you, Sleeping Beauty,
you're going on a very exciting trip. You'll travel from yesterday all
the way to tomorrow. It's a rapid journey and you'll travel light,
leaving behind you - measles, mumps, freckles, bumps, bubble gum and me.
I promise not to feel too hurt when you discover that the world is more
important than your daddy's lap. Yesterday you were blue jeans and pig tails,
the neighborhood's best tree climber. Tomorrow you'll be blue organdy and
pony tails and you'll view the world from a loftier perch - a pair of high
Yesterday you could mend a doll's broken leg with a hug; tomorrow you'll
be able to break a young man's heart with a kiss. Humh! Humh! Yesterday you
could get lost one aisle away from me at a supermarket - now I have to worry
about losing you down another aisle to some strange young man. You see,
just at the point where you're growing pains stop, mine begins. Yesterday
you were kind of a pain in the neck when you were around, tomorrow you'll
be an ache in my heart when your not.
Tomorrow you'll lay aside your jump rope and tie up the telephone lines
and that little boy that used to push you in the mud; well, he'll fight to
sit out a dance with you. The clock is countin' the minutes for you and the
sky upstairs is savin' its' brighest stars; - and the sun is waitin' with
its' shiniest day.
Oh I, I can't expect you to live in a doll house forever. Sooner or later,
the butterfly sheds it's cocoon and the smallest bird must try its wings.
But when you grow up and out of my arms; when you finally get too big for my
shirts, I'll still recall how you used to scatter dust and dolls and partially
through ev'ry room in the house; but you spread sunshine too. The dust is
settled, your mom picked up the dolls; - but the sunshine will always fill
the corners of our hearts.
So, here I am talking in your sleep, because, well if you saw this look on
my face, you'd laugh and if I spoke with this lump in my throat, I'd cry.
Yea! honey when I looked at you tonight you were a Sleeping Beauty. So, I
tiptoed over and I kissed you - you didn't wake up, I knew you wouldn't.
According to the legend only the handsome young prince can open your eyes
and I'm just the father of the future bride.
So you sleep on pretty thing, tomorrow you'll wake and you'll be a young
lady and you won't even realize that you've changed courses in the middle
of a dream. But you might notice a little change in me; I'll look a little
different somehow. A little sadder, a little wiser, but a whole lot richer.
Tonight, I kissed a princess and I feel like a king.
If you want to hear the recording of this follow this link