Tuesday, May 29, 2012

On Giving Away Children in Marriage, Part Two

Chronologically, she is a grown-up.

From a distance, she looks like a grown woman. When she was 12 and 13, she was the tiniest of her friends, and I thought she would remain a little girl forever. Boy, did that change.

Close up, she usually looks like a grown woman. But occasionally the little girl peeks out.

Her accomplishments and achievements to date tag her as a grown woman. The trials and other experiences of her life are those that only a grown woman could deal with.

When she meticulously plans the menu for her wedding reception, and wants shishkebabs (with blue potatoes!), fancy rice pilaf, and green salad with all kinds of weird stuff in it, it's clear that she has grown up. But when she spends weeks mail-ordering her favorite candies, in bulk, for the candy bar at her reception, it's clear that she's still a little girl.

When she poses for pictures after the ceremony, she is definitely a grown woman — until she and friends (or her new husband) mug for the photographer — and then she turns back into a little girl.

When I hold her as we dance to "Dancing with Cinderella," and her white dress swirls around her ankles and gets caught in my shoes, and I look at her carefully done hair and her joyful smile and the sparkle in her eyes, there is no doubt in my mind that she is a grown woman. But when we stop to laugh at my missteps, and when she hugs me at the end of the song and says "I love you, Daddy," she is still my little girl.

She and her fiance/husband don't go on dates; they go on adventures. And when they return from their adventures, they write storybooks and comic books about them.

This college graduate goes on job interview trips by herself, and lands a professional job by herself, in a city 60 miles away. And squeals like a little girl. She frets about apartments, and deposits, and credit ratings, and commute distances. Like a grown-up.

She's 24 years old, a professional, and newly married. But she is still my baby girl, and I will always think of her like this:

1 comment:

Amanda said...

This is so sweet :)