Sunday, June 26, 2011
Last night Hannah and I watched the movie Father of the Bride, starring Steve Martin. It's a comedy, but a sentimental one. It opens with Steve Martin sitting in a chair, his house littered with the aftereffects of a wedding reception that happened a few hours prior. He breaks the fourth wall and talks to the audience, explaining how it all came to that moment.
The movie is a classic and a masterpiece of sentimentality. It touches on the realities of growing up and letting go that scares me so much. I'm so young, but I've learned a few things. One is that you never stop growing up. It didn't just grow up, arrive, when I got married and moved out of the house. Soon I will become a father and I'll grow up a little more. One day my youngest will start kindergarten. Move out. Get married. Have kids.
Each event will make me grow up a little more. And though I am overjoyed about these things, they sting a little. Anyone who talks to me says I am just beaming whenever I talk about Abigail. I am. One day I'm going to be the most important man in her life. I will be Dad. For a brief moment in time I will be protector, provider, a source of joy and a fount of love. I will never stop being Dad, but one day she will stop being my little girl. She'll be a young woman. She'll be a mom herself.
It's not ridiculous to think about these things now. Not to a sentimental guy like me. Some people believe I'm not living in the moment, not enjoying the "now" because I'm thinking about the future. Actually, thinking about the future is what makes me latch on to the moment, to be able to look at my wife, my daughter, my family, and say, "I know I'll remember this moment for the rest of my life."