Fam­ily Ties

Ev­ery time we cast a line, Daddy and I catch mem­o­ries that are big­ger than any fish in the lake.


Teacher Amie Rolland knows that home is wher­ever her dad is.

Adad is ev­ery child’s hero—if they’re lucky, as I am, to have a great one. I’m an English teacher in Bei­jing, China, who was born and raised in north Lou­i­si­ana. Af­ter I moved away, my folks sold our home and bought a new place on the lake.

I was a bit leery of re­turn­ing to this new house, but when I walked in, it was home. Fam­ily pho­tos line the hall­ways and shelves. And my dad’s drums sit in a room full of Dal­las Cow­boys mem­o­ra­bilia and enough records and CDs to open a mu­sic store.

My fa­vorite thing about go­ing home is fish­ing with Daddy. When I was home re­cently, it rained most of the time, but as long as the rain wasn’t ac­com­pa­nied by thun­der and light­ning, he was stand­ing in the back­yard throw­ing a line.

When my dad isn’t work­ing, you can find him fish­ing. Grow­ing up, I of­ten took this for granted be­cause if I’m not hook­ing any, I get bored. I re­al­ize now how pre­cious our time to­gether is. When­ever I fish with Daddy, I think about Trace Ad­kins’ song, “Just Fishin,” be­cause it re­ally is al­ways more than that.

Eter­nity wouldn’t be enough time to go fish­ing with my Daddy. Liv­ing abroad has taught me to cher­ish the small­est of mo­ments. But we re­ally shouldn’t have to be sep­a­rated to re­mem­ber how much our fam­ily loves us.

We never talk about the re­ally per­sonal things, be­cause I’m his girl and he’s my daddy, ya know? But the thing I love most about him is how he re­acted when he knew I was un­happy in our home­town.

I’ll never for­get the mo­ment he told me I should leave home.

That was pain­ful, I know. And I see how it takes ev­ery ounce of his courage and strength to put me on a plane each time I leave. I can never thank him enough for giv­ing me the push I needed.

I take af­ter my dad in many ways, and I’m thank­ful for each trait, even the bad habits. I love the bond we share, and al­though I can’t re­mem­ber ev­ery mo­ment, I have mil­lions stored away.

I’m writ­ing this to ask you all to re­mem­ber and cher­ish your fam­ily ev­ery day, not just on the hol­i­days. Happy Fa­ther’s Day, Dad. I prom­ise to never get so wrapped up in this crazy life that I for­get how to find my way home.

Though they live in dif­fer­ent parts of the world, Amie al­ways makes time for her dad.

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