Raising a Resilient Woman: A Father’s Gift of Empowerment

Uduak Asuquo
3 min readJun 16, 2024

As I reflect on Father’s Day, I am filled with a profound sense of gratitude and admiration for the remarkable man who shaped me into the woman I am today — my father. From a young age, he instilled in me values and principles that have become the bedrock of my character and the driving force behind my success.

My father was a visionary who understood the importance of empowering his daughter to break free from societal constraints and gender norms. He drummed into my ears the unwavering belief that as a woman, I could be absolutely anything and achieve anything I set my mind to, as long as I was willing to put in the hard work and dedication required. His oft-repeated mantra, “Instead of doing anything haphazardly, don’t do it at all,” has been a guiding light throughout my career, pushing me to strive for an “audacity of excellence” in all my endeavors.

My father profoundly challenged rigid gender roles through his actions. As a young university student, when I returned home late from classes, he ensured a warm meal was waiting for me. “It is problematic for anyone to come back from wherever by 7 pm to start cooking, anyone at home should cook,” he would say, defying conventional norms.

His belief in shared domestic duties regardless of gender challenged the status quo and empowered me. Leading by example, my father took on household responsibilities, shattering gender stereotypes. Alongside this, he instilled the importance of respect — insisting I never tolerate disrespect or stoop to bad behavior. Kindness, he emphasized, was just as essential as strength. This imparted to me a balanced approach to navigating life’s challenges.

Beyond instilling a strong work ethic and shattering gender stereotypes, my father taught me the invaluable lessons of respect, kindness, and dignity. His advice to treat the driver with the same regard as I would treat him exemplified the value he placed on human decency and compassion.

Integrity, hard work, and self-respect were the pillars upon which my father built his life, and these values have become the foundation of my own journey. The woman I am today — confident, resilient, and driven — is a direct reflection of the principles he ingrained in me from a young age.

Regrettably, my father did not live to witness the full extent of my accomplishments and the impact his teachings have had on my life. However, during the final weeks of his life, I saw the immense pride beam from his eyes as he looked upon the woman I had become. The conversations we would have had today, exchanging perspectives and wisdom, would have been a treasure trove of material for articles and life lessons.

As I look toward the future, I carry the torch lit by my father, determined to pass on his legacy of strength, resilience, and unwavering pursuit of excellence to my own children. His influence will continue to resonate through generations, a testament to the enduring power of a father’s love and guidance.

On this Father’s Day, I raise a glass to the memory of my father and the countless other fathers we have loved and lost — the men who shaped our lives, instilled their values, and paved the way for our successes. I also celebrate the fathers who stepped up, embracing the role with unwavering commitment and love, leaving an indelible mark on the lives of their children.

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Uduak Asuquo

Freelance Creative Writer. Avid Reader. Closet Introvert. I want to tell stories that ruin your day in a good way.