It doesn’t seem like it’s been 14 years since Baby Mama dropped a 9 lb. 12 oz., 21 1/2 inch bundle of joy on the world, but it has been. My Drama Queen was supposed to be a King. Two ultra sounds said boy and I still remember standing in that Northern California delivery room on the night she arrived like it was yesterday.
My daughter busted her mom’s tailbone on the way out and my dad jumped on BART from Oakland Airport and was waiting for me to pick him up at the station. I called my mom (who was home in So. Cal. for a couple more days) and said, “It’s a girl.” She said, “You mean it’s a boy.” I peered back over the top of the gaggle of doctors and nurses gathered there, took one more good look, picked the phone back up and said, “Nope. They were right. It’s a girl.”
That was how my daughter entered the world. Tomorrow (Saturday) she turns 14 and I’m feeling kind of old. I went and registered her for high school this week and she’s trying out for the tennis team. How the hell did that happen? How did she go from adorable little angel to hormonal teenager so quickly?
I wish I had an answer to that question. I really do. I also wish I could figure her out. Five months ago she was dissin on the Bieber like a big leaguer. She made fun of his shitty haircut and said that he, “Probably likes boys.” It made a sarcastic dad proud. Then all of a sudden she did a complete u-turn and thinks he’s cool.
How did she go from thinking he was a piece of shit to The Shit in such a short time? I have no clue. All I know is she understands that she’s forbidden from playing his music or watching his DVD anytime I am in the house or am in the same vehicle as her. She also knows I prefer she not utter the B word in my presence.
High school is gonna be a trip. I know I hated high school because I was a tall, skinny dork. It’s true that I rocked the argyle like nobody’s business, but I was a 6 ft 175 lb loser. At least that’s how I felt. As this picture indicates, I also had some stupid glasses and a shitty ‘stache. You think either of those things contributed to my lack of luck with the ladies, or was it the fact I had no self esteem?
I don’t want my daughter to have the same experience I had. I want her to have fun, make friends and feel like she’s a part of something. That’s one reason I really hope she makes the tennis team.
She has a lot of improvement to make to her tennis game. When I got the coach on the phone to inquire about tryouts and summer practices, I was straight with him. “She’s on the down side of mediocre,” I said. “But she wants to play and she’s willing to put in the work to be a good player.” I guess we’ll see what happens. School starts Wednesday and they’re supposed to find out Tuesday afternoon or Wednesday. Fingers crossed.
I’m not sure what to expect from a red-headed teenager loaded with hormones, emotions, sarcasm, a bit of mischief and who has a dad like me. It actually sounds scary as shit. It’s gonna be an interesting ride, that’s for sure.
I feel like I should apologize to my daughter for the life I’ve given her. I know I could have done worse, but I know I could have done much better. She was born in Northern California, moved to So. Cal. when she was four, to Canada when she was 11, then to Buffalo when she was 12 and back to Southern California a few weeks ago.
She’s got a bi-polar mom who is in and out of her life and she has a sarcastic dad with a neurological condition who can be kind of a dick at times. It’s not a huge hole she has to climb out of, but she definitely has an uphill battle.
Happy Birthday baby. I hope you like the bike your aunt and uncle are buying you. And I hope you make the tennis team. And I hope your mom actually calls you this year. Hugs and shit.
P.S. Yes, she’s wearing a tye-dye onesey. We lived near Berkeley and used to hit the street vendors on the weekend. They’re basically a bunch of burnt out hippies who peddle their wares near the campus. And yes, she appears to be playing air guitar in her sleep. I’m not sure what she was playing, since she wasn’t plugged into an amp.