Saturday, November 19, 2005

My Daughters

My daughters are 10 and 7, and the greatest thing that ever happened to me.

My wife and I had our first son at age 23. Followed by 2 more boys. We were done before we hit 30. Or so we thought. Sometimes no matter how careful you are, or how many precautions you take, kids happen. It's like God has a plan that no amount of mortal intervention is going to change. 7 years later, the wife is pregnant again, and we're horrified. We were not expecting this, were not prepared for this, didn't even have health insurance, let alone maternity coverage. Because of my wife's age (36) the doc insisted on an ultrasound. We're told it's another boy. We expected nothing less. We even had a boy's name picked out, named after my father and best friend (talk about killing 2 birds with one stone!) Then the time came, and guess what? A girl. It was the most incredibly emotional experience of my life. There wasn't a dry eye in that delivery room. The doc, the nurse, my wife, myself - we're all weeping like babies.

I didn't know what to expect, or what to do. I had 2 brothers and no sisters, then 3 boys. I wouldn't BEGIN to know how to act with a girl. But it worked. 3 years later we had our second girl. I went in shortly after that for my vasectomy. But that's a different story, remind me to tell it if I don't remember to do that in the next few days.

From the womb, these children were way different than boys. I didn't think that would be the case, I thought environment played a larger role. There was no mistaking the difference in the genders. I used to think there was NO comparison to watching little league football. It was the ultimate weekend activity for the father. But I was mistaken - it doesn't hold a candle to 6 year old girls soccer. Or basketball. Or volleyball. It does edge out dance recitals, but not by much.

Tonight, the girls talked me into watching a movie with them. We popped in Finding Nemo, and they fought to see who would snuggle in next to Dad. I put my arms around both of them, and we settled back to watch the movie. It was hard to see sometimes through the tears, just like it is now, but it was a fine movie, made special by the company I was with.

I love my sons, they are all incredible boys. We had experiences and memories that I'll cherish forever. But I'm a different person now than I was then, and it's a different experience this time around. It's like I was given a second opportunity at this parenting thing, and I'm going to enjoy this to the fullest.


Lisa said...

I have two daughters myself and wouldn't trade them for anything in the world. If I had boys...I don't know what I'd do!

jane said...

There's nothing in this world like knowing when you read about 'daddy's little girl'. But I always love hearing it from the father's view...just a total melting of the heart.