With Father’s Day just around the corner, President Barack Obama took some time to reflect on his years as a father to his two daughters Malia, 11, and Sasha, 8. The 44th US president, who was raised by a single mother, recently penned a letter to his daughters. The following is an excerpt:
It is rarely easy. There are plenty of days of struggle and heartache when, despite our best efforts, we fail to live up to our responsibilities. I know I have been an imperfect father. I know I have made mistakes. I have lost count of all the times, over the years, when the demands of work have taken me from the duties of fatherhood. There were many days out on the campaign trail when I felt like my family was a million miles away, and I knew I was missing moments of my daughters’ lives that I’d never get back. It is a loss I will never fully accept.
Obama also reflects on his ideals as a father: “I think back to the day I drove Michelle and a newborn Malia home from the hospital nearly 11 years ago… I think about the pledge I made to her that day: that I would give her what I never had—that if I could be anything in life, I would be a good father.”
The president’s letter will run this Sunday in Parade Magazine.