My daughter is one of those girls that stays attached to her mommy at all times.
Occasionally it works to my advantage.
Like, when the daughter puked up a vat of semi-digested popcorn the other night.
I got stuck cleaning chunks off sheets while the wife got to hold the daughter's hair back as she "talked to Ralph on the big white phone."
Other times...well, it's not so awesome.
Like, when 10 adults and us spend the first hour of a dinner party having to spell out naughty words so the daughter doesn't learn what "flashing, douchebags, and quickies" are.
It's been a long and painful road watching the daughter remain attached to the wife in social settings.
I stay out of it waiting for the wife to drop her Jedi-mind-trick-ninja-awesomeness stuff on her. In the old days that would result in the daughter perplexed and left hanging with kids before she knew what happened.
Now, the daughter just laughs and gives the wife that, “time to step-it-up a notch loser” look within seconds of saying, “hey look, an awesome movie’s on in the other room!!”
However, this past weekend was huge.
The family hit an awesome party which for the first hour the daughter decided she was 38 and ready to be an adult with everyone.
I watched as she made eye-contact with the adults as they told stories. She smiled at punch-lines. She was entranced at long tales recounting drunken nakedness through the neighborhood.
That’s when I knew the attachment had to be broken.
Visions of the daughter being 12 years old, drinking beer, hanging with the adults, telling stories we’re all drunkingly laughing at while wondering “who invited the super young chick to the party” filled my head.
She needed to hang with the kids.
And that’s when I come in.
Scooping the daughter up, tickling her as I lead her to the massive cookie stash just steps from the “Night at the Museum” movie blaring next to the gaggle of kids with juice-stained mouths.
Within minutes she was double fisting sugar awesomeness and being swept up by the kid-magic.
And I…I escaped back to the world of drunkin stupidness. A couple hours later, she was in the middle of the room doing the robot as we all laughed our asses off.
A circle of adults and kids were her audience as she juked and jived around the floor. The same little girl who a few hours ago wouldn’t let go of her mommy’s leg.
The wife and I basked in the light of hope that our little angel might finally be breaking out of her shell. Doubtful…but hopeful.