This morning, when I asked Allie the requisite, “How does it feel to be seven?” she told me things weren’t a lot different. From the looks of things, I couldn’t argue with her.
But I knew better.
Every day this kid grows and adds a new trick, another turn of phrase, a new perspective with more depth and ever increasing sophistication and complication. I watch her grow and wonder which new facet she’ll keep and which one will be cast aside to make room for another and another and another after that.
She’s a lot better than sea monkeys and a lot more interesting than an ant farm.
I’m glad Deb and I set her in motion seven plus years ago.
Despite what I’ve written, I’m not one of those dads who believe that the sun rises out of my child’s rear end. I see her pick her nose, I watch her when she’s deliberately cruel to her sister and if she doesn’t stop eating with her mouth open I’m going to put a Jacuzzi in her bedroom and force her sleep in the garage. That said, as clearly as I see my daughter for who she is it’s just as obvious that she (along with her sister and mother) is the best part of who I am.
I’m convinced that the key to being reasonably happy is anticipation. Having something to look forward to keeps us plodding along no matter how dull, painful or infuriating things become. Seven years ago, Debbie gave me something to look forward to at the end of every day.
So the next time you hear me bitching and I whine to you that I’m unhappy; I’m not being entirely honest. At some point, I’ve got a hug from seven year-old Allie coming my way.
How could anything be that bad?