Laura on Life: Super dad

Published 12:00 am Friday, June 17, 2011

Mommies are great. Super, in fact. Still, there are some things that only a super daddy can fix.
My daughter, who is thirteen, recently found out how super her daddy really is.
A few months ago, she and I were shopping for clothes. The girl is like a stalk of bamboo. She grows faster than a speeding bullet. Sheís skinnier thanÖ a skinny thing. And sheís able to leap tall fences in a single bound. Thatís because sheís Supermanís little girl.
The point is, she had a growth spurt this year and is growing out of everything I buy her before it loses its new clothes smell. Thatís why we were shopping.
Her dad is over six feet tall, so we can assume that he had a series of growth spurts growing up as well. We can also assume that he knows what itís like to grow out of everything so quickly.
While shopping for the clothes she would wear every day, something caught her eye on a nearby clearance rack. She went to investigate. I waded my way through one inappropriate article of clothing after another. It was frustrating to me that in order to dress my daughter in anything that would fit, we had to choose from clothes that a high-priced call girl might wear.
Sheís 13! Presumably, every girl who wore her size was around 13 years old. Why arenít there any clothes for 13-year olds that donít require a bikini wax or a push-up bra?
My daughter returned just as I was ready to consider shopping in the Boys Department. She held up a dress. Ah, what a dress! My eyes almost teared up. So beautiful. So feminine. And soÖ formal. It was gorgeous; made of wispy layers of light green material that had a touch of gold sparkles in it. It would cover her from head to knees without risking the exposure of integral parts of her anatomy. No peek-a-boo windows, no plunging neckline, and long enough to cover her behind if she were to bend over. It had an empire waistline decorated with lovely rhinestones.
I told her to try it on, because I wanted to see her wearing that dress as much as she did. She tried it on. It fit, of courseÖ perfectly. Unfortunately, her formal calendar was pretty wide open for the year, except for my oldest sonís wedding in eight months.
What could I do? We both knew the dress was made for her. There was only one of them and it was on the clearance rack for 50 percent off. I did what any sane mom would do. I bought it.
We hoped it would still fit in eight months.
Fast forward. With the wedding still months away, she tried on that dress. It still looked lovely but it was getting tight. It was pretty obvious to me that it would not fit her for the wedding.
We could get a new dress for the wedding, but she still had this wonderful confection that she would never get to wear.
This is where her daddy, her hero, stepped up to the plate and hit a home run.
He asked our daughter if she would like to go out to dinner with him. He would dress in his best suit and tie and they would go to a fancy restaurant where her beautiful dress would fit right in.
Now, I should add here that my husband would rather have a colonoscopy than wear a suit and tie in the middle of a hot summer. Nevertheless, he would do it simply because my daughter wanted to wear her dress somewhere, anywhere.
Her eyes lit up. She gave him a huge smile, a plethora of ěthank yous,î and hugged him with all her skinny might.
That, and the steak he ordered for dinner, was all the thanks a super daddy needs.
Laura Snyder is a nationally syndicated columnist, author and speaker. You can reach Laura at or visit