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15 More Mondays
by Scott Steele,posted Feb 1 2012 10:01AM
One of the greatest joys of my life is being a dad. As I get older, I'm constantly amazed at how I react to things I experience on a daily basis. This weekend, I was honored that my 18 year old daughter asked me to come along to see the "photo shoot" for her senior portraits. If you have kids, you may have experienced the "dad is no longer cool" moments where your kids want nothing to do with you. That's why this moment was so profound to me. "You mean, you actually WANT me to come along?" I said. "Of course daddy!" came the quick reply.
The week leading up to the photo shoot was pretty stressful. I was (also) asked to tag along for the shopping spree to get ready for the photo shoot. (Grrr...) My wife and daughter HAD to make sure they had several "perfect" outfits. So I quietly carried shopping bags and endured the process. In the end, the day of the photo shoot would be one that I'll never forget.
We met our friend and uber talented photographer Charlotte Stringer downtown near the Governor's Mansion on Sunday afternoon. Brittany turned on that million dollar smile, the camera started clicking, and the tears started falling. As I stood there watching, thoughts started racing through my mind about my toddler that's now a beautiful young woman. Dance recitals, softball games, school festivals, aching shoulders and back from carrying her around for weeks on end at Disney World and Talladega, father/daughter dance, selling Girl Scout cookies together, first days of school, the first time a boy called and came over to the house. It all came rushing back in the blink of an eye.
And there she was...looking as beautiful as I've ever seen her before. Then she says, "Hey dad...only 15 more Mondays til school's out." Then the mental slideshow started all over again and the tears just wouldn't stop. The lense kept clicking and all I can think of is, "Have I been a good enough dad?" Just hoping that I've poured enough into her that she'll make the wise choice when difficult decisions come her way.
As we drove home, I challenged myself to think of a word that I could use to describe her. Here it is: Breathtaking. I can't wait to see what God has in store for her...but whatever it is, it's going to be Breathtaking!