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“…as you move through this life, and this world, you change things slightly, you leave marks behind, however small. And in return, life and travel leaves marks on you. Most of the time, those marks on your body, or your heart are beautiful. Often though, they hurt…” ~ Anthony Bourdain

After 42 years, I’m honest enough to say, ‘I know nothing.’ Life happens the way it is supposed, and it may not develop as you decided to plan out. There were days that I sought out certain goals and places in my life…a route that I had full control of. Times before, I was the great and cool uncle. I’ve experienced devotion and love in that role, from calming my nieces, to travel vast distances regularly to see their development from an infant to a toddler and adolescent. I don’t know what it is to be a father. To stand there in awe as my child is being born. To face my insecurities as I try guide this precious life in the right direction and not project what I want onto them.

Each day, I’m learning what it feels like to be a father. I’m about 2.5 to 3 years late, but to marvel at this young life. There is nothing that melts your heart like a 3 year old telling you she ‘loves you,’ nor is there pain like when she cries when you leave on an airplane after telling her that ‘the last time you left, was the last time that you were going to leave.’

I easily remember a time that I said that I was ‘lucky,’ to be corrected that I was ‘blessed.’ This little girl has blessed, and remanufactured our lives in ways that can not be explained. As I right this, I’m her jungle gym…among other things.

On this Father’s Day, I can’t tell you that I understand my parents, or my father. I surely can’t tell you that I’m experienced or an expert on this, I learn multiple new things each day. I’m wowed by the person she is, daily, and I’ve learned a new type of love. Everyday I’m thankful.

The manuscript Blue Lines is the fictional coming of age narrative of a young California woman Key Yemaya Walker, and her 2 year growing journey through school, love, and life period piece, written by Kenneth Suffern, Jr., taking place at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill between the years of 1997 – 1998. Loosely based on true events, and experiences during that time, told through the eyes and voice of the main female protagonist, a freshman first attending the school

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