Two years ago I wrote a blog piece “She’s moving out today” in which I described my thoughts, feelings and hopes as my daughter Jessica left home to undertake an acting diploma in Sydney. Two nights ago she graduated.

How those two years have flown! In what seems a very short space of time I’ve had the joy and satisfaction of watching Jess learn the art of acting. I was blown away by the skills on display at her presentation night. But more importantly I’ve been thrilled to see Jess grow from a schoolgirl into a vibrant, independent and amazing woman.

I still miss her like crazy, but that makes the times we get together all the sweeter.

Jess’s move out of home and to a new city meant renegotiating the father-daughter relationship, and I’ve been pleasantly surprised at how comfortably this occurred. We’ve gone from seeing each other every day and mum and dad being authority figures (or having the illusion of being so!) to phone calls, dinner dates, and the treasured times when she’s home for a few days; from strongly directional input into her life to sharing wisdom, offering advice when it’s asked for, learning to withhold it when it hasn’t been asked for and watching respectfully as she makes her own life choices.

All in all it’s been a good run, everything I could have hoped for as a father.


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