to poppa bien

happy father’s day!

as this day has drawn closer and closer, i’ve struggled to figure out what to get you – for a few reasons.

[one] you buy yourself all of the best gifts before anyone else has the chance to get them for you.

[two] i am a very poor human being.

with those two speed bumps in the road, i decided that i’d just write you a letter. because i think i’m pretty good at writing, because there’s many things i don’t tell you enough, and because this blog is free.

so here it is.

dear pops,

thank you for staying up with me when i was little + my anxiety was too big for me to handle alone. when it wouldn’t let me sleep, just sleep, without pounding at my door. for laying in my bed and doing everything you could just to make sure i could close my eyes and rest, for a bit.

thank you for taking me on long drives into the country in high school so i could just cry + spew out word vomit about my irrational worries about school or friends or just the idea of life in general. for letting me yell at you and turn my anger towards you because i didn’t know how else to express my sadness. for knowing that those drives and talks were exactly what i needed even if i didn’t want to admit it.

thank you for coming to butler on my second day of college just to bring me a refrigerator. for driving an hour to bring me a frozen box. i was really afraid those first few days, and seeing you made me feel a little stronger. it really helped.

thank you for letting me cry to you when i found out i didn’t get into that study abroad program sophomore year. for answering the phone on the first ring when i snuck out during class to call you. i was really disappointed + scared to tell you, afraid you’d be disappointed in me. but you weren’t, because you’re a really good dad.

thank you for encouraging me even when i have ideas that seem too big. for letting me go to new york city for an entire semester. for letting me go to film school for an entire semester. i never said it enough while i was there, but the only reason i was in the city of my dreams was because of you [and mom]. i got to live out my best possible version of life, because of you. i got to experience things my anxious teenage self could only daydream of. not for a second did i take it for granted, i do want you to know that. not for a second did i think that this was normal. not for a second did i forget how gosh darn lucky i am to have a dad like you. a dad who wants me to go after the stuff that excites me, really excites me.

thank you for supporting me through my summer of unpaid slave labor to an arts institution. i am aware that this is not a summer most people can have. i am aware that living in a new city without any substantial income is not a sentence that relates to many lives. because of you, i’m here.

i’m bad at saying thank you; i’m not very good at being outwardly grateful. i struggle with it because your support is so big + sometimes i worry i don’t deserve it. sometimes i’d rather pretend i don’t notice it so that if or when i disappoint, it’s not as big of a deal. but that’s stupid + immature and it’s something i’m working on.

and i’m starting with this letter. thank you for everything, all of the above + so much more. i owe so much of this life to you, and i love you so much.

happy father’s day, pops!

xxxx abby


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