Hmm… He’d lean over and in that sweet way all sixteen year old boys have, he’d gently place the most purest of kisses on my daughter’s eagerly awaiting lips. EAGERLY? Did I say that? I meant chastely waiting lips. Pure. As in driven. As in the white snow. Untouched. Right from the cradle. Snatched from the cradle! What am I thinking of?
I shook my head and finished drying the last of the dishes. Out of the corner of my eye, I glimpsed my daughter and her boyfriend sitting together in our living room.
Had it really been two weeks ago when my daughter and I joked about how romantic it would be if her boyfriend gave her that special first kiss on our upcoming visit together to the Eiffel Tower? I glanced again at the two of them now huddled head to toe studying the itinerary for our first trip overseas. Occasionally, their eyes would meet and both would blush brighter than the roses he had given her for Valentine’s Day.
I shuddered at the prospect of young love. She was almost sixteen. Only parents can fully appreciate what it means to get a daughter to this age. Untouched. Unscathed. Our hope and joy and, well, let’s face it. We didn’t want her to go through what we had at her age.
My husband and I still squirm at our memories of sneaking out of the house to meet friends on the corner. Lying to our parents about illicit beer parties held at parents’ homes who liked to go to bed early. Riding in cars with peers who could barely make out their hands in front of their face. Our list of broken parental rules was quite extensive.
But we made it. Amazingly, God had mercy on us and we survived. Unfortunately, we learned the hard way. I was determined it wouldn’t be the same for my daughter. No, they would ascend the tower in separate elevators and we would pace guard over the top deck until all the pictures were taken. She could hold her breathe for that special moment a few more years. Maybe a wedding would be part of the bargain.
My daughter accused us on more than one occasion that we were being too strict. “I’m old enough to date alone now. All my friends are doing it. I’m the only one who isn’t!” She accused.
The tears almost got us but when she stamped her foot in the way she has since she was two, I knew she was still too young.
Maybe requiring chaperoned dates until she reaches her twenty first birthday is going a bit overboard. We should consider moving it back to nineteen perhaps. I admit that clothing differences might also be a tiny issue. I see no good reason why turtle necks can’t be worn year round. Florida does have air conditioning. I feel they enhance her pretty smile. Her dad agrees.
I recalled how years before, God saved my husband and myself from our destructive lifestyles. He pulled us out of the fires before we burned beyond recognition. Did I want to see those same scars on my daughter? Weren’t my scars enough? Did I really trust God with my daughter?
I entered the living room just as my daughter held up a brochure for the French Catacombs.
“Hey Mom, this brochure shows a really cool place underground that we can visit.” I squeezed my eyes shut and envisioned dark tunnels with lots of out of the way cubby holes to sneak in that first kiss.
“Honey,” I called out. “Did you remember to pack your flashlight? You know the one. The one you use to spot deer with miles away?” Bon Voyage. I only pray it will be.
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