Bill Belew has raised 2 bi-cultural kids, now 34 and 30. And he and his wife are now parenting a 3rd, Mia, who is 8.
When I was 13 years old. I was finally able to live alone. I am finally able to appreciate the sacrifices my father has made for me. He has sacrificed countless time, energy, and money all with the sole purpose of making me happy. He is a great father; he worked really hard to support the family I have. We have three kids and two grandmothers and two grandfathers. I am the only child Dad had made my life so beautiful but not only that, I am his only baby girl. I cannot think of one recital, awards ceremony, or special event in my life where my father has not been present. That’s why he is so important to me I think, because he makes it a point to constantly remind me that he is there and will always be there.
Everything he has done for me is out of love and I am in awe right now just typing this because I feel so grateful and blessed to have him in my life. The greatest lesson my father has taught me to date is how to be independent and be a brave girl as well as have faith in life. I love him so much as I want to work hard and have a good standard lift to make him happy. He also taught me about self-worth. I trusted my father with all my being so when, as a little girl, he would tell me I was beautiful, smart, and talented, I believed him. And thus, I believed in myself. I recognize that I am lucky. Many women grow up without a father or do not have an active relationship with their dads. They often seek attention and praise from men who most of the time doesn’t value them. My daddy was the first man I ever knew. He was my example of how a man should treat women. So I grew up in a household where a man treated my mother and me with respect and genuine compassion. And I consider that a blessing.
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I am very grateful to my father because he loves me and love everybody in my family. Because he loves me. I love myself. And because I love myself, I am able to bring love into this world. Because of my father, I have the chance to make the world a great place because he has made me a great woman.
Talk to Bill and others about their experiences raising bi-cultural Japanese-American kids.