Tomorrow, at 12:55 p.m., my little girl turns 11.
And in another week, she heads off to middle school where who knows what awaits while I head to the pawn shop to buy a really big pistol, a concealed carry permit, and several bottles of Valium.
Up until now, my life as a Dad has consisted of diaper changing, 4,390 Lego pieces scattered across the living room, and trying to help her do Elementary School level homework.
We're about to graduate to boys, cliques, boys, Pre-Algebra, boys, and all the joys of 400 plus pre-teens gathering in one place, for 8 hours, EVERY day.
Did I mention boys?
I may only be 5 ft 6 inches, but if I accomplish nothing else in this life I swear on the contract of David Ortiz that I will make life miserable for every little dink who darkens my front door.
Not only will they have to pass my carefully crafted Red Sox quiz, they are going to have to make it through the front line defense of Rakes and Trot, THEN get past me, my gun, and that 8 inch think steel door I'm having installed next week.
For the love of all that is holy, where have the past 11 years went? To say I'm not ready for all this is the understatement of the century. I don't even know where to begin.
All I can hope for is that I've brought her up the best I know how, she's actually listened on the rare occasion I've made any semblance of sense, and that her Mom's genes are the majority rule.
'Cause other than that?
I've got no hope.
Happy Birthday, Baby Girl.