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Wednesday, February 09, 2011

The question we all ask ourselves

Wednesday, February 09, 2011 By

I am watching some show on TV with Emmie, and the character's father laments his relationship with his daughter.

"You know, you want to tell them how much you love them, but not too much and not too little," he says. "Too much, and it looses its value. Too little, and they question your feelings."

I look at Em. She is busy drawing on herself... awesome. I tell her a billion times a day how much I love her. I want her to feel like she's wrapped in a blanket of adoration. When she looks back on her childhood, I want her to say the same thing that Russell Joel Brown once told me when I interviewed him for a story about local celebrities' favorite Christmas gifts. He said, "I had a really beautiful childhood. I wish every child could have a childhood like mine."

Of course, once she turns 17, she'll probably dye her blonde hair black, start wearing a dog collar and begin lamenting her bourgeois parents. This is why we have a convent all picked out for her.

Still, I have hope. I want to act on that, not fear. And my affection for her isn't dutiful. It's spontaneous and true. When she snuggles in the bed with me at night, I'm overjoyed to find room that doesn't exist in the bed and kiss her head while she snores gently.

Still, I wonder...

"Emmie, do I tell you that I love you too much, or too little, or the right amount?"

She crinkles her forehead, as she puts another petal on the flower she's drawing on her arm. After a moment's thought, she shakes her head.

"Ummmm... Too much," she says, and then grins up at me. "But iss jus' da right amount for me."


  1. Two points for Emmie! It's amazing how witty she is. I think your "blanket of adoration" thingy is awesome. Don't let go of that idea. Of course she will one day move out of your house (and dye her hair black and brown and orange, and cut it and let it grow again), and some times she might even not like you too much. But when she's older, when she's past that aweful adolescence stage, she will know that she can ALWAYS go back to that blanket of adoration. That blanket of adoration has kept me sane for 10 years away from home :-)