Name: Destinee Thompson City: St. Louis MO | @dejeweled
Dad’s Name: Quentin Thompson
Describe your relationship with your Father and how did that impact you?
My daddy’s love permeates my soul, and I feel invincible when I am around him. My dad was the first person to make me feel seen, heard, and valued. I have always been welcomed to be my whole self around my dad. As a small kid, he encouraged me to explore the vast recesses of my mind and share them with him. He was only a kid when I was born, so we grew up together, and that growth came with a lot of growing pains. Having him as a father has shaped me in ways unimaginable.
What’s the best thing you’ve learned from your Father?
My dad taught me to live my life!!! Although my dad has spent more than 20 years in prison, he has seen and done so much. After all this time, my dad’s mind and spirit are uncaged. Even after all this time, I meet people who speak about the impact he has had on their lives. I know my drive and passion for exploration and fun come from him. I am a seeker of life, just like my dad.
What struggles did you face in your relationship with your Dad and how did you get through them?
My dad is one of the closest people to me, but our relationship had its struggles. The first was the silent shame of his incarceration. I sang “we don’t talk about Bruno” before Encanto (lol). For many years the silent shame kept my dad a secret part of my life. And if shame wasn’t enough, life was like, wait, I got a good one for you. Take 2 parts teenage parents, mixed with some generational trauma, sprinkled with growing pains; topped with a fight, and what do you get? -Nearly two years of my dad and me not speaking. After many tears, personal healing, and some rough conversations, my dad and I were able to repair our relationship. Yet, not having him there to hug me and wipe away the tears is another struggle I have not completely mastered.
What has your relationship with your Father taught you about what to look/not look for in your partner?
My dad taught me the value of partnership through his words and action without ever naming it. He always encouraged everyone to be the best version of themselves and enjoy what they do and the people they do it with. Show and tell people they are special to you, and most importantly, “Never dim your light!”
By showing up as your whole self, you give others permission to do the same. From those many lessons, it laid the foundation to seek a partnership where we both decide to pursue purpose alongside one another. It wasn’t until I read bell hook’s All About Love that I had words to describe the feeling I grew up knowing I wanted for a partnership.
How has your relationship with your Father shaped the woman you are today?
Depending on who you ask, you will hear I’m a female version of my day, and in some ways, I agree. I have inherited some of the best traits from both my parents. I got a quick mind, tenacity, charisma, and a love of life from my dad. Through time, wisdom, and lessons from my daddy, I have grown into the woman I am.
If you could write a short letter to your father, starting with “Dear Father,” what would you say?
No matter what the world calls you, you will always and forever be my Daddy. I love you, and I am proud of you. I value you and would not trade you for the world. I have always felt your presence, guidance, and support, even in your physical absence. I admire how you have never allowed your circumstance to steal your mind, spirit, and humanity through the years. Sometimes when you speak, I can’t fathom how the words coming out of your mouth are from a man who has spent over two decades behind bars.
Thank you for seeing and supporting me to be Destinee. Even when I was a kid, you allowed me to say, think, and feel without restrictions; remember that plane ride back from Atlanta when I sat with the stewardess…lol.
You’re my personal Yoda, biggest cheerleader and headache wrapped in one.
Happy Father’s Day, QJT!