MY ANGELIQUE

MY ANGELIQUE

From Chicken Soup for the Country Soul

My Angelique

In the twenty years that I’ve spent on the road as a tour manager and bodyguard for some of the top bands in rock and pop music, I’ve seen and experienced some incredible things. I’ve watched the sun rise like glistening gold dust on the beaches of Maui. Seated comfortably in a Lear jet, I have awakened to see the majestic Swiss Alps at dawn over three different European countries. I’ve sped across Japan in the cabin of a bullet train. I’ve stared at both solar and lunar eclipses. I’ve marveled at the brilliant northern lights beaming over the Laurentian Mountains of Canada. I’ve witnessed mud slides, fires, earthquakes and floods as well as snowstorms that lasted over forty days and nights. I thought I had experienced it all—but I was wrong. Each and every one of these incredible and awesome experiences pales in comparison with the humbling wonder I felt following the birth of my daughter, Angelique Gabrielle.

The exhilaration that took possession of me the day she was born was total; I had to be there for everything. Seated by my wife’s side, I was Ellen’s coaching, consoling husband during her hours of labor. Later, when the actual delivery began, I turned into an unstoppable paparazzo. I took dozens of pictures that no one later cared to see.

I had doctors photograph me holding my Angelique while her umbilical cord was still attached. After taking Ellen’s hands in mine and reminding her how very much I loved her, I took pictures of my long-suffering wife looking exhausted and totally disinterested following her ordeal. I took pictures of the doctors. While I gazed upon my incredibly pink, incredibly tiny new daughter as she rested in my hands, I felt I was looking into the Face of Creation. How could I have known what it would be like to love anyone so intensely?

The year my daughter was born, I ended my career as a tour manager. I swore I would never go back on the road again. But when Angelique was two, I was given the opportunity to compile Chicken Soup for the Country Soul. Unfortunately, the only method I could think of for obtaining stories from touring musicians was to do the one thing I’d promised I wouldn’t do—go back on the road. That was one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever made. Fortunately, after a year, I was able to move my wife and daughter to Nashville to be with me.

One Nashville night while I was up late writing at the kitchen table, I heard a soft and gentle voice at my side. Angelique, then three years old, tugged on my shirtsleeve and said, “Daddy, it’s dark in my bedroom. Will you come and stay with me so I can get to sleep?” Is it any wonder that her bedtime has always been the most precious hour of the day for me?

“Sure, Honey,” I replied, pulling my six-foot-four, three-hundred-pound frame up from my chair. I took her little hand in mine and accompanied her quietly down the hall. When we reached her bedroom, we knelt in prayer before I tucked Angelique in under the covers and sat by her side. I told her to close her eyes and promised to stay until she fell asleep. I vowed I wouldn’t let any harm come to her while the sandman visited her dreams. In the soft glow of the night-light, I watched as her tiny fingers pulled the tattered security blanket up to her chin and my baby girl closed her eyes. Without warning, I was overcome by a wave of emotion and my heart split open. Quietly, unashamed, I let soft, gentle tears flow from my eyes. I couldn’t believe how much I loved her. On that night, and on many other nights since, I’ve had no difficulty finding the words to let my precious Angelique know how much her daddy loves her.

My Angelique


In the midnight hour, like a cherub doll,

Soft cheeks so tender, wonder on her brow,

Like a statue baby, skin as white as snow,

Long hair of amber, her face is all aglow.

I’ve heard angels laughing, I’ve heard them cry,

I’ve seen angels dancing, in her daddy’s eye.

Like a ray of sunshine, in a world so bleak,

She could smile a sunrise, My Angelique.

Only three years old, with a tender soul,

She holds life’s answers, in her heart of gold.

Buttons, bows and dresses, my baby doll so sweet,

She redefined my life now, My Angelique.

I’ve heard angels laughing, I’ve heard them cry,

I’ve seen angels dancing, in her daddy’s eye.

Like a ray of sunshine, in a world so bleak,

She could smile a sunrise, My Angelique.

Ron Camacho

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