I’m in the middle of a meeting yesterday, and my cell phone rings. I am trying to turn over a new leaf, so I am working very hard to, you know, like, answer it. And I see that it’s my daughter, Sydney, on the other end. We’ve been trying hard to wrangle a few loose ends on the financial aid front, so I excuse myself momentarily to take her call.
“Hey, Syd. What’s up?”
“Hey, Dad. …I don’t know. I’m sitting here with a moment to myself, and I wanted to bounce something off you.”
“Shoot,” says I, thinking it’s the kind of “bounce this off you” that takes a minute or so. It ain’t. But it’s all good. Quite cool, in fact.
She tells me that she’s considering a double major in political science (which she’s already declared) and, of all things, philosophy. She’s taking this class–a survey course of sorts, I am guessing–and it seems like the scholarly heavens are opening up to her.
I see it clearly. The depth of her conversation over the course of recent months–even in short bursts via phone–is obviously deeper. It’s nuanced and intriguing. And the information she’s taking in, she’s processing and then generating whole new ideas and connections and opinions.
Seeing this transformation makes my heart sing.
And then there’s the matter of…
“I’ve always thought that you’re a born philosopher,” I say after she lays it all out before me.
“Well,” she responds. “I would say more that I’ve been raised to be a philospher. After all, I am your daughter, Dad.”
I gotta tell ya, standing in the middle of a public place at that moment was a difficult proposition. ‘Cause my heart was suddenly in my throat.
“Yeah,” I reply, my cool only marginally intact. “There is that.”
“I still want to do law school, but it seems like there’s a really close relationship between political science and philosphy. I have my philosophy class right after my political science class, and I notice how a lot of the terms and concepts are almost identical. I’m thinking that it might be a good thing. Make me more well-rounded.”
My little girl. All grown up. Blossoming into quite the amazing young woman.
She asked me if I thought it was a good idea to explore the whole philosphy angle.
Let’s see…my kid’s in college and actually taking to heart the whole “higher learning, expand your horizons” aspect of the experience, as opposed to merely marking time till the paper mill spits some empty and meaningless document at her.
Yeah, kiddo, I think it’s a good idea.
And I am proud–oh, so proud–to be your dad.