Sunday 19 October 2014


This could be the story of what it takes to grow and maintain a beard in the hood. But it’s more to do with the joys of having a beard while being father.

My 15 month old daughter has developed a habit of fondling, gently tugging and running a little chubby hand through my beard. This she only does when falling asleep snuggled up against me, bottle of milk being devoured. As I look down, l smile as l notice her losing the fight to the ever increasing weight of her eyelids. A sudden switch to a full twisting grip full in her chubby hand has me on edge. l brace myself for the pain about to shoot through my chin. but when she's sleepy the beard is never yanked, never aggressive in nature towards the bead when she's in sleep mode. The grip firmly pulls a chubby fistful of my beard and the wiry strands of my face mane slip (with just the right amount of friction) through her fingers. I focus on the minute knuckle dimples on her delicate yet perfectly formed hand.

My thoughts drift off to all the potential that this little hand has. One day the same will grasp a pen and write numbers and letters, then words, sentences, then complete written works from letters to school assignments. Times have changed we live in the digital era now. So the same hands will type or use a touch screen. She already does when her mother is using a tablet. Her little fingers poking at the screen, then rapidly toddling away before my wife gives her a telling off. She also mistakenly believes the monitor screen is also touch responsive. As her little hand prints will testify to her multiple attempts to interact with the on screen images. What she has in dexterity at just 15 months amazes me. The ability to pinch just one single hair on my forearm and much to my discomfort almost yanks that one single strand out. She now stacks toys and places lids on boxes, hand covered in spaghetti sauce gently feeds me single strands of pasta. As I snap back to the present moment I noticed the beard affection has stopped. The little one has lost her battle and succumbed to the might of sleep.

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