Average people have a habit of turning into wild soothsayers when they find out you're expecting. In my case, volumes of prognostications were given about what being a father would be like or how it might feel. Here are some things that no one prepared me for. If you've ever wondered what was happening in the hearts and minds of dads with daughters, consider this list a kind of soul peep show.
1. No one ever told me how soon she might pay attention to boys.
Like many of us, I pretty much bought into the social anthropology that sees boys as the romantic aggressors and girls as, at best, generously tolerant of their pursuits. This all changed one night at the gym, when my daughter Mary Grace tugged at my arm and earnestly pronounced, "Daddy, do you see that boy over there? I like that boy!" As we sipped our smoothies in the gym café, she continually turned around to see where he was and watched him intently. At one point, he even came over to the table. His name was Harrison, and to her credit he was polite, cheerful and well-spoken. He treated her kindly and with great respect. The one drawback to her first crush was that he was a 6'4, 19-year-old with surfer good looks and the physique of a linebacker. He was the café worker. And she was 3. Seriously.