Today is my daughter Rebekah’s seventeenth birthday. For months she has been requesting that I devote a post to her (and maybe a little about God). So, in celebration of her, here are 17 things I have learned from my daughter:
- Losing a tooth at 14 months creates a beautiful smile.
- Father- Daughter dances are magical.
- Taylor Swift was cool before Taylor Swift was cool.
- People only say “agree to disagree” after they’ve realized they are wrong.
- Leggings are pants.
- The ending to “How I Met Your Mother” was just wrong.
- An argument can be made that having only two children, especially one boy and one girl, is the perfect situation.
- If you think “erging” is easy, you are probably doing it wrong.
- You can never have too much makeup or nail polish.
- There is nothing wrong with having a doll named Smelly Baby.
- If someone writes “I am Stupid” on the inside lining of a purse, it is safe to assume they are talking about themselves and not the person who will open that purse regularly.
- P.S. Coffee is always worth the walk.
- No matter how hard a daughter may try, dads will still never fully comprehend the proper usage of teenage slang.
- No one ever got sick from “writing on yourself” ink-poisoning, despite what parents may claim.
- Soup is a meal.
- There is no such thing as an inappropriate time to take a selfie.
- Almost nothing beats walking along city streets on a brisk autumn evening with a colicy snuggly bundle of joy.
Seriously, as I think back over the past seventeen years, I marvel at the woman who has grown up and matured before our eyes. She has seen success and weathered adversity, at all times remaining humble. She has shown wisdom and she has made mistakes, ever willing to learn from the experiences of life. She has brought us inordinately more joy than sorrow – despite what the scriptures say, her joy typically reveals itself after noon. She has surrounded herself with good friends and immersed herself in good books. She has a unique fashion sense and an uncommon common sense. We have been blessed.
An added blessing that Rebekah has given me, as a father, is appreciation that girls are different than boys. I took High School biology, so was fully aware of the physical differences, but I was unaware of the emotional and relational differences. My only reference to girls was my sister (eight and a half years older than I) so I was unprepared for the hugs, the tears and the talking that comes from a female child. I am blessed in always knowing how Bekah feels, what Bekah thinks and when Bekah hurts. My life has been enriched by the little girl I still can picture with a bow velcroed to her head or smiling with her front tooth missing, her eyes sparkling and her joy beaming.
Now, if I could just keep her from dating for a little bit longer, that would be perfect.
Then our sons in their youth will be like well-nurtured plants, and our daughters will be like pillars carved to adorn a palace. Psalm 144:12