It's the Little Princess' birthday today. She's grown up. I mean, she's 23 years old. That's grown. But she's still my little girl. My Girl.
To a large degree, she doesn't really like being called my baby girl. And I understand that. But she is ... and always will be ... my little girl. My Girl.
I remember her birth, 23 years ago this afternoon. I was there.
The first family member to look at her face was me. Yeah, doctor and nurses were there. But so was I. And I was in a better position to see her than any other family member (her mother, who was there, too).
I was struck by how much she looked, not like me exactly, but she looked like my family. One look at her and you knew she was a member of the family.
Oh, sure, after a bit I could recognize bits that looked like her mother or her mother's family, but the first thing that struck me was that she looked like my family. She was My Girl.
When she was little, the car seat was in my car. She was, for the first bit of her life, Daddy's Girl. My Girl.
But that changed. She began to grew up and became a little princess. She did dance and baton. And was, in fact, Little Miss Majorette of America one year; the girl has got talent.
But as she did more "girl stuff" she was less and less interested in stuff with her old man. And that's how things usually go.
My service in the Army, the divorce, the move ... all these things contributed to her having ... and wanting to have ... less and less to do with me.
Lately, though, it seems as if she does seem to find time for me. In the last couple of years, she's initated telephone calls, come to visit, and such. And things like that feel really good to a father.
Recently, the Wife (her step-mother) and I got new cell phones. And I mentioned the silly ringtones we got. In addition to getting a special ring for the Wife, I got one for the Little Princess: My Girl.
Yes, it's her birthday today. But when I talk with her or spend time with her, it's me who gets the gift: a beautiful, wonderful little girl. My Girl.