Monday, September 24, 2007

Training, the kid keeps growing, and romance revisited

So, here I am in a C# training class for the week, which I'm assuming based on the first couple of hours is going to be a miserable week, reminding me of all the things in the IT world that are upsetting. To enumerate, the sign on the door "Introduction to C+", the personal ramblings ("I think x will be the future of programming"), the experimenting with nonstandard classroom computer configurations, dirty keyboards, the table and chairs out of sync heightwise, and nothing yet that approaches any programming meat. The good news is the unfiltered Internet connection, hence this post, which I couldn't do from my office since about a year ago when "blog" was became a filtered keyword.

What's new? My kid is awesome, which isn't new, but she's continuing to be awesome in Middle School, making friends, being more challenged in some classes than she's used to, like the advanced 6th grade math class, all the while tackling a full schedule of dance, soccer, and music. We've butted heads on a few issues in the natural progression of her asserting her independence. My angst for that whole deal is out of proportion to the problem because of one simple fact: I've been a natural at fatherhood up until now.

After I last got angry with her, I chilled myself out and sat down with her and had a conversation that went something like this: Stacey, you've always had a natural gift for numbers. You've been at the top of your math class since you started school, been bragged on by your teachers, and been put in the gifted program at school. This year, you are put in with other kids who were at the tops of their classes, and the work is harder, and it doesn't come easy for you any more. You have to work at it, practice, and be patient while you get your head around new concepts that don't just automatically jump off the page at you as obvious. It's the same with me, now, with being a dad. I used to always know what to do, and it was easy, and I was never worried that I was doing the wrong thing, never frustrated, and always got along with you famously. Now you're growing up, and it's harder. You're running into life problems I struggled with when I was kid, and how to help you and balance being a parent and being an empathetic friend is harder. I'll have to work at it, and struggle to not be frustrated. And I love you just as much as I always did, and we'll figure all this crap out.

Or something like that. I doubt I was that eloquent, but the message was the same.

In other news, I met this woman. I like her. She has a cool kid who is almost 3, and although is unafraid of my wild Husky, the kid is completely terrified of me, the new guy. Between that and the recent struggles with Stacey, I feel as though I've completely lost my kid mojo. I found out later that the kid actually liked me, and liked the rice krispie treats I made for her, and liked playing in Stacey's playroom, and watching Cinderalla, but was a little concerned that mom intended to leave her there for me to babysit.

It looks like the woman and I might start seeing each other regularly, and I'm running the gauntlet of emotions again, the ones I thought I had conquered years ago. I've still got love, passion, fear, impatience, confidence, and cowardice all jumping around in me, just like I was a kid again. It's fantastic!

Two thumbs up for:
Shoot 'Em Up
Resident Evil 3
and The Truman Show, which I somehow managed to avoid seeing for 9 years.

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