I count myself as one of the luckiest dads in the world. When my daughter, Jasmine, was born, she was born premature in a not-so-good
Chinese hospital. My wife had pregnancy complications that affected her chance of surviving to birth. We weren’t given much information by the non-English speaking staff, but we understood that every day there was a chance she might die. We waited as long as we could with constant tests and then authorized the surgery. Jasmine came into the world by emergency C-section around 4 am on July 20, 2012 by a doctor in training who had to call the lead doctor twice in the middle of surgery to confirm what to do. We then spent 3 hours on a cot in a hospital hallway, because their weren’t enough beds in the hospital. Amazingly, since then, Jasmine has been extremely healthy with no further complications.
So every day I’m thankful for the time I get to spend with her, because I know how lucky we are to have her here with us. Being a working father is incredibly hard. I would love nothing more than to stay home each day with my daughter. Actually, the only people I consider luckier than myself are the moms and dads who get to stay home with their kids all day. I really only get to see her on evenings and my days off, but we make the most of our time. We play, read, watch videos, go for bike rides, and walk in the woods. Every chance I get, I try to do something fun, new, and exciting with her. Here on the North Shore, we’re lucky to have a large number of family activities that are often free, not to mention all the amazing natural preserves around here.
It’s thrilling to watch her grow and learn each day. She’s getting so big now at 2 1/2. It’s almost hard to remember when she was so small and tiny in China. As she gets older, we can do more and more activities and it’s really exciting to get to talk to her more as her language grows.
I want to give my daughter the best that I can, which is one of the main reasons I work so hard to give her the gift of other languages. We don’t have much money, so we can’t send her to a lot of programming or go abroad much anymore. But I can definitely do my best to help open as many doors as possible in her world through languages. She’ll have opportunities that most children in the US won’t and an amazing ability to communicate with other people and cultures.
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