My husband isn’t afraid of fingernail polish. We have a nail salon set up in our bathroom every two weeks. My daughter opens the bathroom cabinets and gathers the nail polish remover, cotton balls, and a couple of bottles of nail polish. She sits on the ledge of our bathroom tub and her father, yes, folks, her father paints her nails. He paints with a quiet focused diligence and she smiles in a perfect grin.
She shows her nails to anyone who is paying attention. The usual question is “Oh, those are pretty. Who painted your nails?” She replies with exuberance, “My Daddy.” Most people correct her and say “No, honey, I think your Mommy painted your nails.” She says with emphasis, “No. Daddy painted them.” People turn to me and I say she’s right, her Daddy did paint her nails.
It is funny that this will be their moment. She doesn’t know it yet, but I do. Witnessing their moment triggered my own memories of my father. My father didn’t paint my fingernails, but as a little girl he would always take me to putt-putt golf. He would help me pick out my putt-putt club and we would play the course for two hours. I suspect he didn’t enjoy it as much as me, but I know now that was his special moment with me. Anytime I pass by a putt-putt golf course, I think of my father and smile.
These specific ordinary moments in time brings us the most comfort. I suspect that my own daughter, when she is older, will also look at the fingernail polish bottle and also think of all those times her Daddy painted her nails.