My daughter had her last final today. That's it - absent the diploma that will be handed to her on Sunday, she's done.
As she left the house today...
My relationship with my daughter has always been special. I remember when I looked at my wife, Jamie, and told Jamie that she was pregnant and that it was a girl. Jamie didn't know. In fact, it was only a few days after Bari's conception. Later that month when she suspected that it might be true and got a test, she was in fact pregnant. In the hospital eight months later, Jamie sprouted a fever and they took her to the operating room for an emergency C-Section. The nurse looked at me while Jamie succumbed to the general anesthesia and asked me what names we had picked out.
"And if it's a girl?"
"No, that's the girl's name. Bari - with an 'i'."
"And if it's a boy?"
"You had a test? The doctor told you?"
"No. I just know that she's a girl."
The nurse kind of shrugged and went to work with the doctor and 5 minutes later, she confirmed that Bari was born and doing great. Because Jamie was out cold, I was the one who held her for the first 45 minutes of her life. She looked at me and I'm not even sure if she blinked that whole time. I was crying, of course, and talking to her, but it was just me and her in the rocking chair in the 5th floor nursery.
Fast forward nearly 18 years, and here we are today. Bold, vibrant, loving life, and ready to rock the world... that's my daughter. She leaves in a couple of months. I'm glad that I have unlimited long distance.
This summer will be nutty. My son, Aaron, goes up to spend the summer with his mom. Nick will spend some time there too, but how much time is up in the air at the moment. During weekends, I plan to go camping with whichever kids are around. In thinking of that, and since my busy schedule lately hasn't allowed me much time to paint, I did a lunchtime sketch of a guy sitting in front of his tent.
He looks so relaxed. Sounds good to me. But with my boys bouncing around all over me.