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A Teenager's Parent

Wherein I consider all that Jay-Z and I have in common.

I thoroughly enjoyed watching the 2024 Grammy Awards show. I loved Tracy Chapman's performance of "Fast Car" (even with that other guy singing backup) and liked Miley Cyrus' "Flowers" far more than I would care to admit. My daughter was over the moon about Taylor Swift announcing the release date of her next album.

One of the show stopping moments was Jay-Z's acceptance speech for winning the Dr. Dre Global Impact Award. It piqued my interest because instead of brining his super-star wife (Beyonce) on stage, he brought their super-star daughter (Blue Ivy) to stand beside him. I was reminded that I was a parent of an infant when the announcement of Beyonce's pregnancy became world news.

While the announcement of my kiddo's birth garnered nowhere near the level of attention achieved by Blue Ivy, it was as life-changing for me as it was for Jay-Z.

It is rare that I compare myself to the rapper, record producer, and entrepreneur that is Jay-Z. My music career hasn't taken off and the ROI on my investments has been consistently less than his. But I can say that we've both been parents for about the same amount of time. During these thirteen-ish years, we've both experienced the roller-coaster of emotion that is parenthood. We've laughed, we've cried, we've celebrated milestones, and we've gotten into arguments with our kids about cleaning up after themselves. Jay-Z and I aren't all that different.

I must now refer to myself as the parent of a teenager. Jay-Z must do the same in the near future. And one day, should I be recognized for any achievement, I hope that I can celebrate with my daughter at my side, just like Jay-Z.