Friday, March 30, 2018

Dear Samuel and Ethan

For the record, you have my full, unwavering support to pursue your dreams.

Be as impractical and ridiculous as you want. You can be a VR engineer or a screenwriter or a podiatrist, I don't care, as long as it's what you want to do and you're not a jerk to other people.

If you need to come back and live at home when you're 35 (even if there's a toddler in your bedroom), we'll work it out.

I will never tell you you can't pursue the job you want, marry the person you love, or be who you are meant to be.

Just stating it publicly so you can call me on it.

Love, Dad

Sunday, March 25, 2018

I'm going to tell you everything about her

She's smart. She's bilingual. She's a VP at an investment bank. She analyzes risk for a living. She's rational and analytical, but with a streak of impetuousness, like me.

She's clever and sharp, with an eye for detail. She said when we started dating she noted that my apartment was clean. She noted that my fingernails were trimmed.

She's funny. When she smiles it makes me smile. When she laughs it makes me laugh.

She's naturally pretty. She has soft brown eyes, a gentle smile, smooth skin. She looks like she's 29. She wears almost no make-up, and only one piece of jewelry at a time--earrings or a necklace, but never both. She dresses professionally for work, but looks just as elegant when she wears jeans and a sweater. She has no pretensions. 

She likes to stay fit, likes to eat healthy. She doesn't smoke. She drinks in moderation, a glass of wine or shares a beer with me.

Then there are the deeper things.

She is family oriented. She loves her parents and her brother, wants them to be happy. She likes and respects Samuel and Ethan. She'd like to have a family of her own.

She has a kind heart. She cares about other people. She volunteers with her church. She is humble, gracious, devout.

She is joyful and adventurous. Her exuberance is childlike. She jumps up and down when she bowls a strike. When she hasn't seen me for two days she kisses me like she hasn't seen me in a month. When she asked me to join her on a business trip to Miami, she said, "And maybe for the weekend, maybe we could go to Orlando know, maybe go to Disney World or something? Only if you want to."

(We held hands while we watched the fireworks over the Magic Kingdom.) 

She likes dogs and convertibles and camping and beaches and BBQ and pecan pie.

She loves me for who I am.

Why am I telling you this?

Because I'm happy, and I want to talk about her, and I think she's wonderful.

Because we both deserve this. We've both been blown a bit by the gales of life. Neither of us is where we thought we'd be at the end of Act 2. But we've been given another chance to write Act 3. And it's going to be a love story, damn it.

Friday, March 23, 2018

Ten Tiny Toes: the board book

I'm going to make this a long entry, so bear with me.

The board book version of Ten Tiny Toes came out this week. I'm happy.

It will probably always be the book that means the most to me, because it's about watching Samuel and Ethan grow up. That has been the best thing about my life. I would have a hard time coming up with a #2.

We watch life go by so quickly--crap, am I really 55? Nothing has changed me like fatherhood. Nothing has made me take a deep breath and feel not so frightened by growing old and dying. When you become a parent you're no longer the center of the universe.

That's very freeing.

Did you know that the water we drink is the same water that the dinosaurs drank? It's just been recycled from generation to generation. I think love is like that. You don't own it, you don't use it up. You just let it flow through you and pass it down from one generation to the next, and it keeps the world spinning.

Many things in my life have changed since I wrote this book.

My conception of love hasn't changed.

We all grow old and die. That's life on Planet Earth. If we're really, really lucky, we receive love from those who raised us, and we pass love along to those we raise. All of our angst and self-absorption over personal accomplishments, wealth, or eternal youth are just rearranging deck chairs. It's not really about us at all. We're just the conduits for DNA and love.

That's the moral of Ten Tiny Toes.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Samuel is home :)

I heard his voice late Friday night, and suddenly there he was in my bedroom! Home for a week-long Spring Break. What a nice surprise.

Saturday night we went to Mighty Quinn for BBQ, followed by donuts at The Donut Pub.

There is nothing like BBQ, donuts, and love.