For My Daughter On the Event of Her 17th Birthday

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Non-Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
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Submitted: October 16, 2018

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Submitted: October 16, 2018



Seventeen is considered the least random number between 1 and 20. In study after study, test after test, when asked to pick a number between 1 and 20, a majority of people choose 17. No one knows why.  17 is the atomic value for chlorine.  It is the number of syllables in a haiku.

Sometimes I forget
What is really important
Then I see your smile.

Seventeen years. Seventeen trips around the Sun.  That’s nine billion, nine hundred  twenty eight million miles that you have travelled (give or take a few). But the distance from the squalling baby with the tar-like poops, who made weird purring noises to where you are today seems farther.

One blink and you are putting together your own desk armed only with an allen wrench.  You are throwing brightly coloured flags up into the air and actually catching them. You are making friends. You are figuring out who you want to be. And who you are.

One blink.  And it is like you sprung full-grown from the head of Zeus. Ready to tackle the world.  Armed with a wonderful sense of humour, a willingness to be open, and an ability to engage with people that frankly I am jealous of.

The fear of the number 17 is called 'heptadecaphobia'. I never understood how someone could be afraid of a number. But now seventeen is yawning before me like a giant waking up. Whose footsteps will shake my world.

Like those first tentative steps that you took in the basement of a friend’s house, I didn’t know whether you were going to run or fall.

You did both.

Picking yourself back up while we cheered.

Happy Birthday, Aurora. You continue to be an amazing light in my life. The Goddess of the Dawn.  Reminding me of the potential of each new day.

Shine bright.


© Copyright 2019 Michael Porter. All rights reserved.

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