It is the end of May again. That time when the beauty of Spring begins to wilt under the onslaught of heat and humidity that is Summer in Houston. That time when school kids begin to map out their activities for the ever shortening Summer vacation. That time whe I realize that one of those children...my daughter...has passed one more milestone on her way to adulthood.
I watched her walk toward me last week and realized that she is in the midst of another growth spurt. She is becoming a tall and skinny mixture of her mother's bone structure and my coloration and texture. I hope this recipe holds, because it is a beautiful thing to behold in her current form. I have nightmares imagining a teenage version of this creature and the effect she will have on the less developed gender of her species...and the troubles that are likely to follow as a result. Such is the folly of fatherhood...you want your child to grow into a beautiful gregarious version of yourself...until they develop hormones...and then you want to take it back!!!
She has become much more independent in the last year...and much more confident in her own skin. This is both welcome and sad. I love that she is becoming more engaged in life, rather than being a spectator all the time. I do miss the fact that this new independence and confidence is coming at the expense of her apparent "need" for my help. I guess this is not an unusual dichotomy for a father to go through. But it is the first time for both of us, so I will ask your indulgence.
When she was younger, I read to her all the time. Now she reads to herself, blissfully unaware that I steal a glance every chance I get. I love to watch her create her own view of the world through the readings of her favorite authors. I also know that her adventures, just like mine before her , will be based on the stories she derives for herself from these sources. And those adventures are just beginning...
Now, as she is nearing her ninth birthday, and matriculating from the already boring world of a 3rd grader to that unexplored cosmos that only a 4th grade girl can understand, I have one wish to offer her (using the words of one of my favorite childhood authors, Ted Geisel - the inimitable Dr. Seuss)
Oh...the places you will go, my Princess. The places you will go , indeed.
I love you, Cupcake.