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When I was little, my family frequented Bethany Beach Delaware for one week a year every summer. I have many fond memories of Sea Colony, the 8 or so towering apartment buildings that we called home for the week. I remember the pools, the view of the ocean, the conveniently located video game arcade, and the unforgettable pebble covered interiors of the elevators.

I was never a big swimmer, let alone ocean-goer, but my dad and brother loved te water and often attempted to coerce me into a waste level wade into the ocean waves. On one particular occassion, my dad decided to swim out to te sand bar, and bring me along for the ride. I think I might have been hesitant, although at this point it’s too far in the past to remember specific details. Regardless, my dad hoisted me up on his back, and clinging tightly, I rode out for what seemed at the time like an hour through waves and salt and sand. I was scared, but my dad swam strongly and I held on tightly. Eventually, we reached a point at which the waves leveled out and my dad stopped the forward motion that carried us there to stand. We had reached the sandbar, and standing on tiptoes I remember feeling accomplished and connected, staring back on people along the shore resembling the minatre G.I. Joes that I frequently played with. I was no longer scared, and was peaceful. The trip back to the shore, which felt much shorter and was more enjoyable, made me realize that some risks are worth taking as long as you trust the person who’s showing you the way.

To me, that exemplifies the role of fathers and family. Although I was scared and felt vulnerable, my father forced me to experience an adventure that I would have been otherwise oblivious to. I am grateful to have a father who constantly encourages me to explore and discover, and who has made me a better person because of it.

Happy fathers day

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