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March 2018 A Father’s Pride CELEBRATING MY DAUGHTER’S BIRTHDAY
M arch is a month of birthdays in the Manrique clan, with my wife Laura’s on the 19th and my daughter Macy’s on the 23rd. Though celebrating the life of two of the most important people in my life is always a blast, the actual day is usually not very eventful — except for the time a couple years back when my wife and I took a trip to Italy for her 40th birthday. That year, we were out of the country for Macy’s special day, and while we tried to celebrate it another day, she still never let’s us live it down. In her signature stubborn style, she said, “You guys must not care too much about my birthday — you just leave town for it.” Of course, this isn’t true, and I’m sure she knows it. I’m deeply proud of my daughter. It’s been a powerful, heartening experience to see her grow up and carve out a path for herself. Still, seeing her turn 12 is a little surreal. There’s so much to celebrate with Macy, but one of the things I’ve always admired is her independence. That might sound funny to say about a 12-year-old, but if you’ve ever met her, you’ll know exactly what I mean. Macy nearly always goes with her gut, moving confidently in whatever direction she thinks is right. She never shies away from a challenge and rarely cares about anybody else’s opinion once she’s got her mind set.
we’d wanted to. So lately, she’s been taking some ice skating lessons, learning the ropes and progressing with each session. She’s starting the sport a little late, so most of the other kids in the class are 5- to 7-year-old boys. Macy remains completely unbothered by this fact, eyes fixed on the goal she’s set for herself. To see that kind of drive, enthusiasm, and self-confidence in your daughter is just awesome. Another trait that always stuck out to me with Macy is her perceptiveness. It’s kind of hard to explain, but she’s very observant. When we return from a concert or sports event, we’ll be chatting about the broad strokes and what we thought of it, and she’ll talk about the guy with the blue handkerchief and red hat, noting details that nobody else ever would have. Of course, this extends to us as well, so she doesn’t often forget mistakes Laura and I make. She constantly keeps us on our toes. All in all, she’s a tough, intelligent, and passionate kid. I’m always amazed by everything she finds the will to accomplish as she figures out how to move through the world intentionally. As her 12th birthday approaches, I’m excited to see what she does next.
For instance, most kids her age probably start soccer, tennis, softball, or something like that. Not Macy. She decided she wanted to play ice hockey, and there was no stopping her, even if
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