Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Adolescence/Teen Years (07/16/09)
- TITLE: The Window Seat
By Joanne Cordaro
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Lilly has always been a Daddy's girl, and this Daddy enjoyed every single second of it. You might say I relished it. I still do, though our relationship is slowly evolving into something new as she is now officially a teenager.
There are changes. I am no longer the all-knowing sage she runs to for answers and advice. Her Mom and sisters are often first on her list these days. Yet, I'm still her father, and she, my daughter. I have more to teach, more to share. I'm not ready to stop yet.
We talk about deeper issues now, such as love, responsibilities, and futures. We talk on her terms through chats about movies, news items, and even the ads in her favorite teen magazines. Opportunities to communicate abound when you look for them, and I keep a keen eye out for them.
I'm still standing in the doorway to her bedroom, looking at my Lilly. She looks more like an adult than the little girl who used to sit on my knee every evening. She wears make-up, and her hair must be perfect. It was only a few years ago that we'd have to check that her shoes matched before she left for school! My, times sure have changed!
I guess the toughest thing to swallow these days is that I am no longer the man in her life. This one smarts, I have to admit. These new men, these mere boys, hold a place of importance I once reigned over. I fear I will have to get used to this status.
I feel my face soften as I go back into my memory. I remember when Lilly was younger and got upset, she'd sit on this very window seat and wait for me to come home from work so we could talk. Those times were magical and are among my most cherished memories.
Lilly is now sitting in that same position. Her arms are wrapped around her knees, and her knees are tightly drawn up to her chin. From the side, I can see that she is pouting. I smile as I think that I already feel sorry for her future, as yet unknown, husband. He knows not the power of the pout! It has been known to melt pure steel as well as the hardened hearts of men, especially Daddies.
Her slumped position tells me that my little girl's heart is broken, which means mine is already broken for her. I gently shuffle my feet to alert her of my presence. She lifts her eyes to mine. That famous pout becomes a quiver, and those beautiful eyes flood with tears. "Oh, Daddy...." is all she gets out before dissolving into body-wracking sobs. I silently wrap my arms around her and hold her close to my chest. She allows me to rock her as we sit.
We sit on the window seat for a long time. I hear about her latest boyfriend woe. She said no to his advances. He said goodbye. She let him go. I am so very proud of her for making such a responsible decision, and I tell her so. She smiles weakly, nodding. I acknowledge her pain. I tell her honestly, "Some decisions are right, but they can still hurt." She seems relieved to be understood.
We reminisce about past window seat conversations, sometimes even managing a chuckle. She asks, "Do you think we'll always have this window seat to talk on, Daddy?" I smile, "Always."
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