I guess I was supposed to hope I had a son instead of a daughter. I always wondered why that was. Should I feel guilty because I was thrilled to have a daughter? I did not give a rat's ass what popped out. I was happy to just be a father.
Sons are a pain in the ass. I know. I was one. Since I had never had a sister that lived with us (have a half sister down in Texas, but we have only met a few times over the years), I figured a daughter would be a cake walk compared to raising a bonehead boy.
Turns out I was right but not for the reason I thought. As I found out from the child raising experiences of my peers, daughters can drive you mad also. They just use different techniques than boys. Lis(Liz) had her moments, but they were brief phases from which she always emerged more mature and ready for what came next. By age 12, she had surpassed me on the maturity scale. And once again I became the child of the family.
Seems the stereotype of the American Girl has changed. The girls of my youth for the most part did not participate in physical activities of the contact sport kind. All the girlie versions of the guy sports where physical contact might happen had special rules so the ladies wouldn't have to worry about those unsightly bruises or mussed doos. As a young lad who had suffered more than a few times from unwarranted physical abuse from some of these same "young ladies", I knew they were every bit as rugged as I was. Some, way more rugged. I always resented that rule, "never hit a girl". Especially when I was on the ground just after being knocked down by one of those delicate flowers.
Lis grew up a jock. She had her stint with dance class. We even have some very cute but probably embarrassing shots of her in her outfits. Apparently though she preferred the swimming pool and the soccer field. From about age 7, she seemed to always be involved in some sport or another. Naturally, my proudest moments were when she pedaled training wheel free and several years later sat on her first real mountain bike. And yes, she became an excellent rider who cruised downhills with no fear most days. Club sports, school sports right up to and including college, my daughter's life was all about athletic endeavor. That she decided to become an Athletic Trainer out of Grad school seemed the logical next step.
So she is now working at the University of Richmond babysitting D-1 prima donnas and liking it most days. But fixing up other athlete's sprains, tweaks, and bruises doesn't give her that fix she became used to growing up. So what does she do? She joins a Roller Derby club.
The Roller Derby of today is a far cry from the Roller Derby of my youth apparently. The brassy scary lookin women with "big hair" of yesteryear have been replaced by less scary lookin but more intense young women today. The young women of today are as serious about their recreational sports as the men are. And I think that is just so very cool. I always knew they were as good as us loser men. Ask any one of them. You better believe em too, or they might just knock you on your ass.
Right On Ladies. Kick some ass.
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