Copyright M. Andrews 2017
Opening the door, I'm greeted by the smell of corned beef and a smiling Lily bouncing down the stairs in my direction. "Hey dad, welcome home," she greets me. Stopping to give me a kiss on the cheek. It still tugs at my heart when she calls me dad. The first time she said it I completely lost all hold on my emotions and cried like a fucking baby. After we officially adopted Lily, I never expected her to call me dad. I hadn't earned the right just yet and if she never did, I would be okay with that because to me she is my daughter. It took me completely off guard when she asked, "dad will you give me a ride to school?" I balled all the way back home after I dropped her off.
"Hi Lil, how was school today?" I ask. Lily started a couple months behind at her new school, but she has quickly caught up and is already showing her classmates whose boss. Lily is so damn smart, she's even shown me up a few times. She has dreams of attending Harvard and going to med school. She is well on her way of accomplishing it. Lucky and I will do everything in our power to make it happen. Even if it means moving to Cambridge, so we can help with Charlotte and just so we can be close to our girls. Lucky has already started looking into houses. In the few months that Lily and Charlotte have been with us we can't imagine our lives without them.
Lucky especially has become attached to both girls. It's been amazing watching her with Lily and Charlotte. She has eased into the role of mom and grandmother like a natural. She's an amazing mom. I've never seen her so happy. If me balling like a baby when Lily called me dad, Lucky was worse. She cried every time Lily called her mom. A year and a half ago I almost lost her after her third miscarriage. The depression and the idea that we were never going to be able to have children of our own was almost too much for her. So, to see her come so far from where she began, to seeing her smiling and laughing and letting herself feel every emotion whether good or bad has been amazing. When times get tough she no longer feels the need to run. For the first time in her entire life she is truly happy. I always knew she had the ability to get there and she did and I couldn't be prouder of her.
"I got an A on my chem lab," she gushes.
"Congrats, I knew you could do it. So, it smells like mom's been cooking all day," I say, smelling the air again.
"She's like a one-woman Saint Patrick’s Day army. She's make clover cookies, corned beef and potatoes, Irish soda bread and some weird pudding thing. And the house looks like a leprechaun threw up." She giggles. "Does she always go this crazy over this holiday?"
"Not usually. I think she's trying to make it special, since it's yours and Charlotte's first Saint Patrick’s Day with us. Her mom never did much of this kind of stuff for her growing up, so I think in away she's trying to give you girls what she never had."
"I think it's cool. I never got stuff like this either, so it's kind of nice. I want to do this for Charlotte too." She smiles.
"Hey, you two come on its dinner time." Lucky appears around the corner with Charlotte in her arms. Both of them dressed in head to toe green. Lucky is gonna look sexy as hell in just that clover headband she has on later tonight.
"We're coming grandma," I tease, knowing how much it irritates her to be called grandma.
"I'm gonna kick you in your Irish potatoes if you call me that again." She glares at me. "I'm GiGi to Charlotte," she corrects me.
I stride over to her and kiss Charlotte on the top of her head, then turn my attention to my beautiful wife. "Sorry GiGi, my mistake." I smile and lean in for a kiss. "Happy anniversary Mrs. Callahan," I say before stealing another kiss.
"Happy Anniversary Mr. Callahan. I love you." She grins from ear to ear.
"I love you too, Clover. I have something for you," I say, reaching into my pocket pulling out a small black box.
"Ryder Callahan, I told you not to get me anything," she protests.
"You should know by now that I do what I want." I open the box for her, letting her see the gold three leaf clover necklace. "It has mine, Lily and Charlotte's names inscribed into the leaves. Now you can have your three-favorite people close to your heart."
The tears begin to well up in Lucky's eyes. "You sweet bastard, I love it," she sniffles. She slides her free hand around the back of my neck and pulls me in for a deep kiss.
Lily peeks her head between us to get a look and says, "It's beautiful."
"Ryder and I have a little something for you, Lily." Lucky gives me an approving nod to give Lily her gift now.
"You didn't have to get me anything."
"We wanted to. Now open your hand," I instruct her as I reach into my pocket and pull out her gift and place it in her hand. She looks down at the silver coin, investigating the four-leaf clover on the front.
"My mom gave this coin to me when I was a kid. She said it brings good luck to the person who owns it," I explain. "We thought we had lost it during our move to this house, but the morning before I found you and Charlotte I discovered it while cleaning out the closet. This coin brought me Lucky and when I thought all my luck had run out it brought us you and Charlotte. Now we want you to have it. We hope it brings you as much luck as it has us." I smile, closing her hand over the coin.
Lily looks up at me with tears in her eyes. "Thank you so much." She reaches over and hugs both Lucky and me. In this moment, I'm feelin' like the luckiest man on the planet.