EMANI'S STORY - THE IMPORTANCE OF FATHERHOOD

We Got Us Now | Guest Contributor: Emani Davis

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My relationship with my father that will power me into the afterlife is one that was built in a prison visiting room. For 25 Father’s Days my mother made the 10-hour drive from NYC to the deep farmlands of Virginia to bring us to see our Daddy. I don’t ever remember growing tired of this trip – I couldn’t wait to hear that door click open and watch my father’s cool glide towards me. Though we spent most of those 25 years separated by hundreds of miles and rows of barbed wire I never felt disconnected. As a very little girl my father told me that I should never be sad for his absence, that he could see the whole world through my eyes and that anywhere I ever went I could take him along. He assured me that love and spirit could never be imprisoned and that our bond was unshakable. 

For 25 Father’s Days my mother made the 10-hour drive from NYC to the deep farmlands of Virginia to bring us to see our Daddy. I don’t ever remember growing tired of this trip – I couldn’t wait to hear that door click open and watch my father’s cool glide towards me. Though we spent most of those 25 years separated by hundreds of miles and rows of barbed wire I never felt disconnected. As a very little girl my father told me that I should never be sad for his absence, that he could see the whole world through my eyes and that anywhere I ever went I could take him along. He assured me that love and spirit could never be imprisoned and that our bond was unshakable. 

As I face my first Father’s Day since he joined the ancestors, I am overwhelmed with gratitude for the relationship that we were able to build through visits, letters and phone calls. Of course, I wished that I had been able to buy my dad the proverbial ugly tie or bad cologne, but we found other ways to express our love through cards and drawings.

I am aware of how fortunate I was to be able to build such a strong relationship with my father during his incarceration, and even more blessed that he was able to finally come home, but my thoughts will forever remain with the hundred of thousands of children whose fathers cannot be with them on Father’s Day because our country locks up far too many, for far too long. 

 

Emani Davis is the founder of Life Beautiful Management Group (LBMG), which grew out of the successful launch of Life.Beautiful Event Planning in 2013. Though LBMG has greatly expanded its services and reach, it now houses the event production firm and continues to provide a hands-on personalized approach to client management, exceptional concierge treatment, and professionally executed events. Staying true to her mission, Emani continues to serve clients whose work expresses LBMG’s commitment to social justice and equality. 

Prior to the creation of Life.Beautiful, Emani spent almost 20 years working with as an independent consultant to nonprofit criminal justice and youth development agencies and programs in New York and California, focusing on family preservation for children and families impacted by the criminal justice system, as well as program design, staff development, recruiting, and troubleshooting implementation and service delivery challenges.