Saturday, April 26, 2014

Little Girl's Songs

Five and a half years ago, I had been listening to this song that for some reason was making me think of growing up and my life and the next step. For about 6 months, every time I heard the song, I'd reflect back and think forward with excitement and a little fear and a whole lot of expectation. I'd wonder if I was ready and what life was going to be like. And then at the end of those 6 months, I heard it again right when it made a difference and it really hit home.

"And now my fur has turned to skin

And I've been quickly ushered in

To a world that I confess I do not know"

Five years ago, exactly, I listened to Blitzen Trapper's Furr on one of several drives back and forth from the hospital where my wife had brought our first born into the world and it made all the sense in the world that my life had gone through the stages it had to prepare me for a moment that I was not prepared for and had no idea how to deal with. Those doubts, those exciting doubts, they were the result of not really understanding. Not getting it because it couldn't be explained. But it was a sign of readiness. Understanding, if it ever comes, comes later. It comes when you do what the next song is about. It comes when you do what I've done and continue to do.

Lenny Kravitz's Little Girl's Eyes (coincidentally on his album, 5) is a song I always thought was kinda cheesy. And really, it is. But the thing is, at one point, after looking at Shayera's eyes a few times, I heard the song again after years, and it just killed me. There's a moment that can happen and I'm sure I've written about it somewhere before, where you look into your child's eyes and it connects you to the way you looked at your parents and the way they looked at you and back through the generations and forward in time, where you finally understand. I had that moment once with her. It changed me and I'm reminded of it every time I look at her now.

This isn't that moment.
She's cool.
Today, she is 5 years old and she's the funniest person I know. Coming from two smart-ass parents, she's taken it to a whole new level of artistry. She's sensitive to the point that it worries me as much as it fills me with joy, because I know what it's like. She is learning to read and loves books. She seems to be interested in science to the point of recently saying she loves Beakman so much she is going to "kiss him on the mouth!" She has been into music from day one and will dance to anything. She will watch everything from My Little Pony to Batman and who knows what else it'll be today, because she knows things aren't just for boys or girls. She teaches me something new about life and what it means to be human almost daily. In her eyes I see my successes and failures as a parent and I see my temper in her tantrums, but we learn together. In the past year, watching her be such a natural at the big sister role has given me the opportunity to live through her and her sister what I never had as an only child. Her laugh is the greatest sound in the world and her cries may as well be punches with flaming, electrified barbed wire knuckles to each one of my bare nuts. I already miss the last 5 years of watching her grow, but I can't wait to see the next 5 and the 5 after that, etc.. It's a bizarre thing. You wish you could somehow stretch time out like paper dolls so you could see them at every stage into the future.

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