Today is my Girlie's birthday. Now I know what you're thinkin', he's going to write a real sweet blog about his smokin' hot wife. Wrong, this is about one of my six other girls, the main girls in my life.
Let's see, we have Summer, who is sometimes known as Sum, Gummer, Princess, and pain in the... well, that's all girls. Then there is Jessica, I think I call her sweetie more than her own name, she's my daughter-in- love, married to oldest boy Westin or Binkie as he has been known in the past or when we want to embarrass him. First on the granddaughter list is Clairese or "Red" as I call her, a beautiful and sweet 13 year old redhead who rumor has it loves her Papa. Next in line is Kaisa, Katii, Pinky, or as I love to call her, "Girlie". Abigail or Grabby is next on the list, she's a sweet, little two year old who just takes your heart every time you get near her. Last is Binkie and Jessica's little bundle of joy, Heidi. I'm still working on her nickname.
I have three sons and four grandsons but we'll leave them out of this right now, with a side note on the Chanman later in the blog.
But let's talk about the Girlie. She came into the world screaming and kicking and for a good part of her first four years continued to do so. In the first few years of her life we took more family pictures of her screaming or kicking rather than smiling and looking cute. She came out ornery and stubborn and stayed that way for a long time. As her life has played out, she has turned into a sweet and somewhat innocent little bundle of sugar and spice and everything nice. And if I may say so DANG CUTE!
When she was born there were only two men present in the room, the doctor and me, the Papa. Being invited in to watch your grandchild being born is more than a little intimidating. What really put the pressure on me was when the doctor turned to me right after he did that whole baby delivery thing, he flipped the scissors around to me and asked if I was ready to cut the cord. Well, I did have a Sports Illustrated article that I wanted to finish in the hallway but he insisted. "It's tough like a garden hose" the doctor counseled, "rarely does anyone cut it all the way through the first try. I girded up my loins, fresh courage took and cut that cord in one shot. I have rarely felt more manly than then.
Of course, the next day I made a visit up to the hospital to see the child when she didn't look like a lizard. It's so nice of the hospital to give them their first bath. The main purpose being to make them cute so the parents will take them home. I recall that I was detained prior to going to the hospital because I hadn't pushed, thrown, allowed, my 21 month old grandson a chance to fall out of the second story window yet. After spending an hour in the emergency room to check for internal injuries to him and to get myself a tranquilizer, we wandered up to the second floor to see this new bundle of joy.
Well, to tell you the truth cutting the cord was about the most fun her and I had for the first three to four years. That child had learned some physical moves and screams in the pre-existence that I didn't know were available. And bad hair days? She's had more than a few. I didn't think that she would ever have a good hair day.
What was really frustrating was the rejection. I've been rejected more times than I care to by women over the course of my life but my own granddaughter! Did she not know that I was going to be her endless source of candy, Slurpees, dresses, and chocolate? She knew she was going to bed if she had to come to our bedroom to "watch TV with Papa". Wink, Wink, Nudge, Nudge. The poor little thing would have to be pried from underneath my body as I was usually comatose. She usually came out all sweaty, dripping wet from head to toe.
Our relationship changed one day. I don't know what she did to me but I didn't like it.
"They", whoever "they" are, say that you should only punish a child by placing them in timeout for one minute for each year of age. To me that's like paroling Charles Manson after sixth months for good behavior. The Gospel According To Daniel says that you will sit there until you apologize for the wrong, and then give me a kiss and a hug to show no hard feelings, or in other words, you will rot and decompose in timeout unless you do those three things.
And she refused.
I sat her down in my chair, held her against her will, possible kidnapping, and then spent the next hour and a half listening to her scream with the occasional kick. The Chanman, her older brother and the aforementioned "child who fell from the second floor" was walking around flaying his arms about and repeating over and over again, "Alls ya gotta do is say you're sorry!" I have to give the girl credit, she went an entire hour and a half before she quietly whispered in my ear, "Papa, I'm sorry."
Then she gave me a hug and a kiss and I placed her down on the floor, gave her a playful slap on the bottom and said, "Get out of here you monkey." You know what she said? "I want to sit with you".
And one day she's going to be a rock or pop star. And I think she can do it.
Just don't forget to give your ol' Papa a kiss and a hug.
Happy Birthday Girlie.