Today Keaton fell into a swirling tailspin of emotion and tears that I could hardly keep up with, let alone understand.

I kept wracking my brain trying to remember what even started it, but was too distracted by her red puffy face any apparent complete overload of sadness. I’m no help, I’m dumbstruck, what the heck even happened here, how’d we get from zero to one hundred? How can she be suddenly so upset, at everything and nothing all at once.

Later, after she’d calmed down a bit, she asked me, “Dad am I ruining this trip for you?” See, the thing is, she’s such an amazing kid. Thoughtful and kind and aware of others’ feelings. She’s also freshly thirteen and overloaded with a flood of new hormones.

“No, of course not,” I answered. “I’m sorry you’re having a rough day, but I’m glad I get to spend it with you.”

Later I made bread pudding and she sang and danced before bed, giving Sharaun and I each a hug and kiss, smiling.

Sheesh. OK.

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