Though it feels that every day is a test and that she would appreciate my failure much more than a second graham cracker, it's good to be a dad.
There are times that she sits in her high chair, staring at me while I explain to her in gentle tones "Drink your god damned milk!" - tones so gentle they scrape my windpipe. And she smiles and tilts the cup and spills the cow juice all over the table. This upsets me. Though I know nothing makes her happier than to watch me mop up, it's good to be a dad.
She kicks me in the balls and laughs. This I tell you sincerely: There are moments in life - moments when you are grabbing your nuts, sobbing, rolled in the fetal position, balls retracted - that it's NOT good to be a dad. She giggles and climbs on top of you and says "Daddy fall down" while you are willing your balls to get back into position.
Left nut....I beg you...I know we've had our differences. if you'll just get out of my stomach and go back where you belong I swear I'll be better to you. Maybe we can catch a movie on Cinemax after everyone falls asleep. Just please go back where you belong...
And then it does. And then it's good to be a dad.
The girl chases the dog around the house. Tries to step on dog's head. I have to separate human from dog. Human throws tantrum. Not good to be a dad.
Dog barks during football game. Daughter grabs squirt bottle and sprays dog. Dog shuts up. It's good to be a dad.
She forces me to read Fox in Sox until my tongue falls out.
She makes me listen to "My Wish" by Rascal Flats every time we get in the car.
She takes off her soaking wet diaper during naptime and drapes it over her face.
Not good to be a dad.
She laughs at all my jokes.
She asks about me when I'm gone.
She loves me.
And someday - hopefully many years from now - I can tell her boyfriend all these details and embarrass her with old photos. "Want to see what she looked like with a diaper draped over her face, Jimmy?"
Yes, even when I'm taking her boyfriend aside and threatening castration - promising to rip it off with my bare hands and shove it down his throat if he gets it anywhere NEAR my daughter, I'll remember:
It's good to be a dad.