Saturday, September 01, 2007

Oh, There's Need To Fear, All Right

Yesterday was the first Friday I've had off in a long time, as well as the first evening I've had alone with the girls without some sort of extra curricular activity to attend. I've been putting in a lot of overtime at work covering a co-worker's vacation and haven't seen much of the girls in the past couple of weeks. Diane was working late, so I decided to have a daddy-daughters date night where we would do dinner and a movie. The movie of choice for the evening: Underdog. Kyra lobbied hard for Bratz, but finally conceded to seeing Underdog after I explained to her that it would be a cold day in hell before I EVER saw the Bratz movie. She pouted for a bit, but seemed to perk up when I asked her if she wanted to stay home or go out for date night.

"Date night?" she asked. "Is that where we go out and you teach us about what we're supposed to do on a date?"

"Uhhhh...I suppose." I laughed. I hadn't really thought about that, but it made sense. Why shouldn't I, as a father, teach my daughters about what they should expect and what they shouldn't tolerate on a date. Granted, they're still about eight years away from the dating scene (oh please, dear Lord), but I guess it's never too soon to start.

Kailey didn't want any part of it. "I am NOT going out on a date with my DA-AD," she protested. "We're just going to go see a movie!"

Fair enough. So Kyra and I went on a daddy-daughter date and Kailey tagged along for the ride. Kyra was hilarious, holding my hand, giving me several spontaneous hugs, and frequently asking, "Is this what YOU used to do on your dates with Mommy?" Kailey kept her distance and looked at us like we were a couple of freaks.

Since we left the house a little late, I decided we'd see the movie first and then catch a bite to eat. To tie us over, I splurged for the $100 small drink and small popcorn at the concession stand, fully knowing that at some point during the movie Kyra would have to go to the bathroom. She did...about an hour in. I don't think Kyra's ever seen a movie in the theater start to finish. I didn't mind taking her this time because the movie SUCKED. I've taken the girls to several movies, usually animated, that I have enjoyed nearly as much as they have. This one, though, was painful to sit through. So Kyra's bathroom break was a welcome reprieve from the torture of this film. The girls enjoyed the movie, and Kailey's frequent bursts of laughter at Underdog's antics and Kyra's loving arm hugs made the time worthwhile.

For dinner, we hit the food court at the mall where the theaters are located. The girls wanted pretzel bites and cheese for dinner, but I said they had to have dinner first. They opted for cheese pizza and I obliged. Big diff, right? At least the pizza had tomato sauce.

As we sat down to dinner, Kyra returned to the practice dating theme. "Daddy, is this where we're supposed to talk about each other's interests and get to know each other?" Kailey rolled her eyes. I laughed. This kid was totally cracking me up. At the same time I was also getting a little freaked. Kyra was WAY too into this dating thing. It very well may have been that she was just excited to be going out with her dad. But I've also heard her verbalize her love for a certain boy at school and how they will one day get married. As innocent as it is, it's still hard for me to suppress the feeling that all of this is a little much for a 6 year-old. Call me paranoid. Call me over-protective. Can't help it. I'm a dad to two daughters.

"Sure," I said, suppressing my paranoia and choosing to indulge my youngest daughter. "This would be the perfect time to get to know each other. So what do you like to do?" Kailey was turning pale and looked like she could hurl at any moment. Part of me could identify with her and was glad she wasn't that excited about dating.

"I like dressing up and going to the mall and singing High School Musical songs."

"Everything I'M looking for in a woman," I teased.

"Daddy!" Kyra blushed. "I'm so embarrassed!"

They finished their cheesy pizza, then the three of us shared a small order of pretzel bites, taking turns identifying the various shapes before devouring them. "This one's a snowman!" Chomp. Off with its head. "Here's a piggy!" Chomp. Off with its head. "This one's a, it's UNDER-dog!" Chomp. Off with its head. Good riddance.

We stopped by to see Diane at her store before calling it a night and heading home. I love daddy-daughters date nights and will continue to have as many of them as I can before they become too "mature" to go out with their old man and before they start dating for real. I'm sure that day will come soon enough. I wish Underdog were here. Oh, that's right. Kyra bit his head off.

No, the irony is not lost on me.


The Beast Mom said...

Love this post.
My daughter has some, let's say..."similiar interests" in the world of love and dating and boyfriends and such. I really thought we'd be spared all this til at least 12 or 13. (not)

the battered ham said...

Well, I'm sorry that you're you're having the same "issues" with C, but I have to say that I'm somewhat relieved to know that we're not the only ones in the world dealing with this at such an early age. Good luck!