I spend a lot of time razzing Basil, but the truth is, Catherine couldn’t have gotten much luckier in the father department.
Oh, it’s true she’s had him wrapped around her little finger from the get-go, but he is a more-than-willing accomplice.
He doted on her from the time she was small. Well, after I pointed out in the hospital that it was OK to touch her.
As I settled in to my (thank goodness I didn’t have to share it) hospital room with my post-delivery turkey sandwich a volunteer delivered a stuffed white teddy bear holding a balloon. The card said, “Love, Daddy” and — yes, I actually did this — I turned to Basil and said, “Wasn’t that nice of my father?”
If you know me or are a longtime reader of this blog, you know I am not always the sharpest tool. Basil’s long stony stare set me straight.
The teddy bear was just the beginning. From that day on, he showered Catherine with love and attention, illegal foodstuffs and uncensored sleep schedules. He was the “Daddy toy” and delighted in bouncing her in the air, teaching her letters and numbers (in Greek and English) while she took her bath each night, taking her around town, weighing her on the scale in the post office, playing on the playground with her, and showing her off to co-workers and his friends at some of the local watering halls (those visits were not sanctioned, either).
When she went through the phase of waking at night, he first enabled her, sitting in the rocking chair and playing with her for an hour or so. Then, when it became clear we needed to make Basil stay in bed and let Catherine cry it out a bit, he was beside himself listening to her on the baby monitor.
“WHEN are you going in there,” he pleaded with me as I counted the minutes Dr. Cass prescribed before I could go in, reassure her and leave again. I had to threaten divorce if he went in there. Thankfully, it only took a brief period of training and we were all back on track.
Today he is the Daddy taxi (at least until November, when the great state of Connecticut says she can use that license without having a licensed adult in the car), provider of Starbucks drinks, lead college tour guide, patient shoe-shopping companion, and — what else — the ATM on feet.
He wouldn’t have it any other way!
Happy Father’s Day, Basil!