Sunday, 27 October 2013

Father's Day: Bassem Youssef to Nadia

Dear Nadia,
“Kotatataahhhhh.” That was you coming into the living room as I start to write this letter to you. You are 14 months old now. You have mastered the word “bye” very well, saying it in the most angelic voice. You have already sabotaged two smartphones: your mom’s Samsung Galaxy, by smashing it to the ground, and my iPhone, by exposing it to your saliva. Now we have to move so many things we never thought would arouse your interest out of your reach. You are moving too fast, climbing up and down furniture, managing to take the TV remotes and make them miraculously disappear. I can’t open the fridge without you jumping inside to explore, and practicing your favorite hobby: taking things out of their places and throwing them away behind your back.
When you get into a room ydcinerbiebrvw—that was you, striking on my keyboard. You have to be involved, don’t you? Well, when you get into a room and people see you, they all say the same things: you are a ball of energy, you are a happy baby, you have such a character, you are not afraid of people, and you are very social. Right now you are a bit over a year old, and you already steal the show. You have the most amazing smile ever. You have the funniest giggle ever.
I worry about you sometimes. I don’t know what kind of world is out there waiting for you. I guess the first instinct for any father is to be overprotective when it comes to his daughter.  Should I worry about you being a young female in this modern world? Should I stress over what kind of partner you will get when you grow up? Should I lose sleep over your academic and professional life?
I think about all of this—even if it seems a bit premature to do so when you haven’t even been to daycare yet. But whenever I do, I just snap out of it, and I tell myself you are going to be fine. You will face problems, take them away, and throw them behind your back. You will climb up and down obstacles and overcome them as if they are nothing. You will take your fears and smash them to the ground. People who want to harm you, will have to move away out of your way and out of your reach. Whatever hardships you will face, you will make them miraculously disappear. And you will do all of this with the most beautiful smile, the loudest laugh and endless power and energy.
I confess that I am not a very emotional person, but you, my dear Nadia, have carved a place inside my heart just for you. And it’s growing every day. I now realize that my worries are solely based on my vulnerability, not yours. You are far stronger and more confident than I will ever be. Do you agree? “Kotatatataahhhhh,” you say. It seems you really do.
P.S: Your mom is a bit jealous that your second word is “Baba” and not “Mamma.” Don’t tell her I told you, ok?

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