Sharing the Force

Star wars family - NZ DadsWe all have our favourite movies. Sometime they change and sometimes they remain our favourite for years. It seems my daughter has transitioned in the last four or five months from a ‘Frozen’ devotee to a ‘The Force Awakens’ one. The whole ‘Star Wars’ thing has been a slow burner for her, from when we watched the original trilogy when she was six years old. A little concerned at first about how young was too young, my mother put my mind at ease when she told me that my father took my brother and me to them when we were four and six respectively. It all works out in the end I suppose. Or maybe it explains a couple of things…..

She was nine yesterday and there was only ever going to be one theme for the big day. She already had the ‘Star Wars’ bed set from Christmas and now after yesterday her room is more a shrine than a place to sleep. Kylo Ren storage boxes, figurines and throw rugs complete the decor as well as the ‘Empire Strikes Back’ pillow cases my brother and I got for Christmas in 1980 (our mother the archivist)… Amongst all of this Queen Anna and Princess Elsa still manage to gaze from their place on the wall although I wonder how they feel about the changes taking place. Pretty sure they are still smiling the same.

So now I have a nine year old daughter. School is good, her friends are sweet, and she seems happy. Best of all is that she is good company. We have interesting conversations and it is always good to hear what she is thinking or how she is feeling. Recently it has been mainly ‘Star Wars’ related and that is great too. I remember the ‘Return of the Jedi’ trading cards that was primary school currency when I was young. We also had the theories and debates about what could have been or may be happening next, and I see that coming through again with my girl and her friends. Maybe the good things about being a kid never change.

We also went to the indoor rock climbing wall for a birthday treat. I was ready with some gentle encouragement, wanting her to be happy with whatever she had accomplished even if that was just climbing up a couple of footholds. I had to throw that all out the window pretty quick as she clambered to the top like a mountain goat though. There were a couple of beginners’ walls where the routes to the top were clearly marked and the holds were large and forgiving but we only stayed there for a couple of runs. She was ready for the real deal and went full mountain goat on the grown-up walls as well. Proud Dad moment #too many to count.

All our days are special but sometimes it all comes together to tell me we have got something pretty awesome going on. Her confidence towards trying new things has come a long way in the last year or so. A year ago it was going down the Upper Hutt hydroslides on her own and now it is this. Combined with her love for ‘Star Wars’ (her new favourite cup is her Kylo Ren coffee mug) I have a funny feeling that she is doing okay. And if she is then I am.

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