Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Rant #963: It Was 25 Years Ago Today ...

Today marks a stupendous occasion in my life.

Today, 25 years ago, at 4:15 a.m. in the morning, I became a father for the first time.

My daughter was born today in 1988, and she turns the "big" 25 today.

I cannot believe that I have been a father for a quarter century now.

I was 31 years old when I became a dad, and I remember the occasion as vividly as anything in my life.

I won't go into that much detail, but I can tell you that I was on Cloud Nine when she was born.

And no, we didn't know whether we were going to have a girl or a boy, and we were very pleased to have a little girl to call our own.

I remember that they monitored our soon-to-be-born daughter's heartbeat, and the doctors told us that she had the heartbeat of a boy.

So we were so surprised--and pleased--when we realized we had a girl.

And she had a darkest mane of black hair I have ever seen!

So much has happened in the intervening years, including the divorce between myself and her mother.

I hold no grudges, it was a union that simply didn't work out for the long term.

We have both moved on, both married again, and as you know, my wife and I welcomed a son into our little family in 1995.

Sure, I made mistakes as a father. The divorce put a chasm between myself and my daughter which exists, to a certain extent, to this day.

But I am very, very proud of my daughter, I really am.

She went to college, got her degree, and after a long period of time, she finally got a decent job, one that she can grow with.

She is always welcome in my home, although she rarely takes advantage of that open house.

I speak to her on the phone about once a week or so, and I see her several times each year.

She has her own life, and is very protective of it.

But she is my first born, and nobody can take that away from her, or me.

She is also the first grandchild on my side of the family, actually being just nine days older than my sister's first born, her first of three sons.

My daughter is also the first great grandchild. I know my grandparents cherished the few moments they had with her while they were alive.

Anyway, I simply cannot believe that it is 25 years to the day that I became a father, a mantle that I will bear for the rest of my life ... and one that I am very, very proud of.

I look at my daughter, as I do my son, and I see a lot of myself in each of them.

They are good kids, have to battle for what they have, and will get what they want eventually, but it isn't easy, not in this world we live in.

My daughter has enriched my life for the past 25 years, given me more of a purpose other than simply being a member of society.

When she first said "dad," and even before that, before she could say much of anything, I was hooked.

I looked in her eyes the first time, right after she was born, and I knew I had finally found my place.

Happy birthday to my daughter. I am sure she will see me today, even briefly, so I can wish her the best in person.

She helped to make my life complete.

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