Ten years ago, I walked in on my husband in a somewhat awkward situation.
He was wearing a hot pink feather boa.
As if that weren’t enough, he was also sporting a jeweled crown, a big plastic ring and enough beaded necklaces to make everyone at Mardi Gras green with envy.
And truth be told, I’ve never found the man quite so attractive as I did that day. Because sitting across from him, on the other side of the Pretty, Pretty Princess game board, was two year-old Katie, grinning from ear to ear.
I did what any good wife would do. I snapped a picture.
If I could find it, I’d put it up here, because even though he made me swear never to share it, after ten years, I’m pretty sure the statute of limitations must be up by now. But more to the point, damn good Daddying ain’t nothing to be ashamed of. (Nor is cross-dressing, but that’s a different post.) Not to mention that the hot pink was a great color for him.
On Tuesday night, we went out to dinner. We never go out to dinner in the middle of the week, but it had been a brutal day and I thought perhaps we could all use some air. Changing up the routine was a mistake. We made it through dinner, but by the time we got into the car on the way home, Brooke was having a rough time. A really rough time. Like an epic meltdown of a really rough time. She was far beyond words, far beyond a place where I could help gather her from the outside in. Katie sat in the front of the car while I sat in the back with Brooke, doing the only thing I could do – telling her I was there.
When we got home, she and I went straight upstairs to my room. We climbed into my bed and slowly, in the quiet cocoon of blankets, Brooke found her calm.
She asked if she could play with my phone. I would have given her anything; the phone was easy.
She took it under the blankets and began to do her thing.
And slowly, slowly, a giggle broke through the tears.
Then a laugh.
Then a squeal.
My girl was back.
Yesterday, I needed to text Luau. When I did, I saw something odd. The last text conversation with him, on my phone, was one that I hadn’t had. It was from Tuesday night. And it went like this.
These are scripts in our house.
What don’t we eat? Snotties. What instruments don’t we eat? Guitars.
Yes, I know how odd this sounds now that I write it out.
But this is what we do.
It’s our normal.
These are the videos …
This is what my husband did when his little girl was struggling and she asked him, for no apparent reason, to eat a watermelon.
And then a donut …
And this is what he did when she asked him to play Ring Around the Rosy …
And then to sleep …
And to wake up …
And finally, to do Big Butts with Winston …
And throughout it all, my girl slowly giggled through her tears, then laughed, then squealed. And finally, she was back.
And as hard as I laughed when I found this on my phone yesterday, I had one overriding thought.
That right there is some damned good Daddying.