As a child, I loved to watch my father, Jamaican-born master carpenter Hopeton Barnett, work. Still in diapers, I remember him allowing me to help him fix his car, build shelves, and do repairs to the house my siblings and I grew up in. My father was a good teacher. By elementary school, I had gotten skilled at crafting wood. My mother used to tease me by saying, “There she goes again. Chip chip chip after her daddy.” It is no surprise, that I developed a passion for design and became an Interior Architect as an adult. My daddy tremendously influenced all of his children. However, he had a special impact on his girls.
I am a very blessed women to be able to thank God and say to the world that my father was not only an important part of my life, but he enriched my life. My childhood experiences were endearing memories of quality family time on holidays, at the dinner table, on road trips or at the beach. My daddy showed me what a gentleman should be, how to work hard and create cherisible moments with the people you love. My daddy helped to instill my values and beliefs, and gave me the tools to be the well grounded, forward thinking, strong willed, determined woman of excellence that I am today. I proudly wear the nickname of “Daddy’s Girl”. And that is no disrespect to my wonderful mother.
My father passed away last year. Father's Day is a reminder of how much I miss my daddy. Although I mourn his passing, he would not want me to mourn forever. My daddy lived his life enjoying every single experience living had to offer. He gave my mommie, his wife of 59 years, my siblings and I an incredible life. He used to say, in a rich baritone patwah voice, “Live life good.” He was a good teacher. So I celebrate his memory through living my life out loud and continuing to honor the gifts that he helped to nurture within me. I miss you daddy, nuff love.
HAPPY FATHER'S DAY to all of you wonderful men who are daddy's, husbands, step-dad's, grandpas, uncles and/or mentors! "Live life good."