Saturday, June 18, 2011

Pride and Joy...

It was a random dreary morning at an even more random hour.  A time before the sun had yet been appointed to rise.  I sat there baffled as to why I wasn't dreaming my usual dream of making the Hulkster tap out from a perfectly executed "figure four leg lock."  She sat there gazing at me with these huge watering eyes, obviously not dreaming at all!  While I was baffled as to why this was, what I did know was that she was no doubt angry.  So much so that she let out a cry of so epic proportions that it seemed an incapable feat from a growing infant.  Given the hour, a few solutions immediately came to mind.  Pacifier? Check! Clean diaper? Check!  Milk warmed by the magic bottle warmer thingy always present bedside?   Check!  So, with my wealth of baby soothing knowledge totally exhausted, we walked.  Well...I walked as she kind of squirmed and laid awkwardly in my arms with every pace down the hallway.  Till this day, I remember it being somewhere around the 1,474th pace that the sun began to rise and she must have began dreaming of whatever babies dream of.  I imagined baby "leg drops" from the bottom rope!  As I laid her down on her side of the bed, snuggled in this wedge contraption, seemingly deemed the capital of this sort of baby Green Zone, her eyes opened and she wailed up again.

Today, she stood at the bottom of the stage, waiting to ascend its steps for the purpose of graduating the eighth grade.  Today, I stood with watering eyes as I snapped awkwardly angled pics of her exiting said stage.  For me, the reason why I felt this way was no mystery.  I was simply filled with pride and joy.  In fact, 13 years and countless paces of it!  Next, I watched as she accepted my flowers, but only after brushing back her hair and smiling a smile as radiant to me as those sunrises we once experienced together.

Apparently though, I wasn't alone.  As we snapped away with our cameras, I noticed a gazing boy and fellow graduate possibly attempting to grab her attention.  Instinct said to take my many nights of training and make him tap out with that surely perfected "figure four leg lock" maneuver!  Quickly though, I drifted back to different times.  I drifted to thoughts of those 1,474 paces, those random dreary mornings and even more random hours before the sun had yet been appointed to rise.  It shifted to my...pride and joy!

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