If you see me and think, “I see a certain glimmer in his eye,” please let me know. Chances are some of my daughter’s sparkles rubbed off on me, literally.
While most of my daughters are in the marvelous range of 12-going-on-30 (with their biological ages varying somewhere in there), we still have one genuine, joyful, loving life youngster in our household.
Given that she’s 7 and that she’s a she, she loves glittery sparkles. Pink, gold, silver, she loves them all.
When my wife found an Easter dress for her a few months ago, we wondered if the sparkles all over it were too much. Our first-grader had no such doubts and embraced it wholeheartedly.
She was the belle of the ball most of the day Easter Sunday, dancing around in her glittery dress and loving every moment of it.
It’s a good reminder of something my high school football coach used to say when urging us to clean our cleats and helmets before a game: “Look good. Feel good. Be good.” That particular advice never worked with my class, which failed the “be good part” with four consecutive losing seasons. But hey, we did look good.
I would’ve just stowed that memory of her dancing around in that dress in my happy treasure trove of memories, the ones that older parents tell you that you’ll miss when they’re older — usually when your eyes are popping out from frustration over whatever that little memory-maker just said or did.
Then that dress came out of the dryer. Now I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to forget that sparkly dress, since little bits of its shine wore off on every other piece of dark clothing in that dryer. I now have black work slacks that look like I’m trying out to be a Solid Gold dancer. (If you’re too young to remember Solid Gold, think of Lady Gaga in her pre-meat dress days. If you’re too old to remember Solid Gold, think about American Bandstand, except the kids rolled in glitter first.)
We tried shaking the sparkles off my pants. Some flew off. Some were more stubborn. Some even flew suicide missions directly into my eyes, somehow bypassing my glasses.
I tried to get them all out, but sadly they didn’t all want to be found. I keep discovering new glittery goodness in unusual places, such as my hair or my eyelids.
I’m trying not to be too frustrated by all those sparkles. Some day, our dazzling 7-year-old will be a moody teen who wants nothing to do with colorful, flashy clothing. She’ll want to blend into a crowd rather than stand out from it. She’ll be like nearly every other teen who passed through our house and yours, opting for the dullest and grayest options she can find.
I’ll look at her, like I look at her older sisters, and remember the spitfire she once was. By then, all I’ll have is a memory.
And maybe one or two more specks of glitter that still hang onto the fabric, like we hold onto the memories of our children’s youth.
David Trinko is managing editor of The Lima News, a division of AIM Media Midwest. Reach him at 567-242-0467, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @Lima_Trinko.