Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Just Another Life Altering Day

They gave us a copy of this poem 6 years ago when Ciera started Kindergarten. My apologies to the author 'cause I'd give credit if I knew who it was. I'd forgotten about it until I watched my not so little anymore baby girl walk across that gymnasium floor and get her diploma for completing Elementary School.

Next year she's off to the New World Order known as Middle School where drama, cliques, and God help me, hormonal boys await. I take solace in the fact I've raised her the best I could, she has a heart of gold, and hates the Yankees with the white hot passion of a true member of RSN.

It's still 3 months away so I'm gonna spend the summer with my head buried in the sand like some mentally challenged ostrich and try and forget that she's growing up faster than I ever could have imagined. Anyways, here is the poem that brought tears to my eyes 6 years ago and brought 'em again today.

Dear World, I bequeath to you today one little girl in a crispy blue dress with two blue eyes and a happy laugh that ripples all day long and a flash of light blonde hair that bounces in the sunlight when she runs. I trust you'll treat her well.

She's slipping out of the backyard of my heart this morning and skipping off down the street to her first day of school. Never again will she be completely mine. Prim and proper, she'll wave a young independent hand this morning and say "goodbye", and walk with little lady steps to the schoolhouse. Now, she'll learn to stand in lines and wait by the alphabet for her name to be called. She'll learn to tune her ears for sounds of school bells and deadlines, and she'll learn to giggle, and gossip, and look at the ceiling in a disinterested way, and she'll learn to be jealous. Now she'll learn how not to cry.

No longer will she have time to sit on the front porch on a hot summer day and watch an ant scurry across a crack in the sidewalk. Nor will she have time to pop out of bed with the dawn to kiss lilac blossoms in the morning dew. she'll worry about important things like grades and which dress to wear and whose best friend is whose. She'll forget her blocks and dolls, and now she'll find new heroes. For five full years now, I've been her sage and Santa Claus, pal and playmate, Father and friend. Now she'll learn to share her worship with her teachers, which is only right. But, no longer will I be the smartest, greatest man in the whole world.

Today, when that school bell rings for the first time, she'll learn what it means to be a member of the
group, with all its privileges and its disadvantages, too. She'll learn in time that proper ladies do not laugh out loud or kiss dogs or keep frogs in pickle jars in bedrooms, or even watch ants scurry across cracks in the summer sidewalk. Today, she'll learn for the first time that all who smile at her are not her friends, and I'll stand on the front porch and watch her start out on the long lonely journey to becoming a woman.

So world, I bequeath to you today, one little girl in a crispy blue dress with two blue eyes and a happy laugh that ripples all day long, and a flash of blonde hair that bounces in the sunlight when she runs.

I trust you will treat her well.

Love you, sissy.


Tree Newt said...

Hard to believe she's middle school...she's the age I teach!!! It flies by. Can't believe Caroline is 3. I think I blinked.

Ted D said...

Dude, life really does come at you fast.

fla beck said...

This is a WONDERFUL photo of you two! You are blessed,Ted!

HorshamScouse said...

Getting a little dusty in Porirua, my friend.

You're blessed.

HorshamScouse said...

Here you go, buddy:


By Dan Valentine
From the book "American Essays: Sentimental Classics Designed to Make the Heart Sing".
Published by Geo. Mc Co., Box 15671, Salt Lake City, Utah 84115
Copyright dates: 1960, 1961, 1963, 1965, and 1966 by Dan Valentine

Amazing what Google can track down :)

Ted D said...

Fla Beck and Horsham, thanks for the kind words. Tough day for the RSD yesterday; she's not my baby girl anymore. But blessed? You bet.

And thanks for researching the author, John. Now I know who to credit!

~**Dawn**~ said...

Aww! Sweet post & photo, Ted. I have no doubt you did an awesome job. I bet my own Dad could commisserate with you...

Ted D said...

Dawn, I did the best I could. All the good traits she has? From her Mom.

Trot's Hat said...

Fantastic picture, Ted.
And that piece is wonderful--except for the fact that you will always be the greatest guy in her world. Speaking from a daughterly perspective... :-)

Ted D said...

I hope you're right, Bridget. 'Course you have the experience I don't, so I'm taking your word for it.

Bickley said...

Ted, that made me cry. Except for the part about "hates the Yankees with the white hot passion of a true member of RSN." That part made me cheer.

Rich in the garage said...

The kid will be allright. She's got an army up north that will kill the first time her heart is broken. So make sure you really really like the first guy you pick and that he isn't going to hurt you or we may run out of places to hide the bodies.

Ted D said...

Bickley, you've got daughters so you know what I'm talking about. I'm guessing it never gets easier.

Rich, knowing my deranged friends up north are looking out for me definitely makes me feel a bit better. And it's Boston; we can just dump 'em in Southie and nobody will think twice.