Hello Hello

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Hurtling through time and space

"What's this?" He's holding the envelope from the middle school.

"It came while you were on your trip. Open it. Let's see."

While he reads the letter, I consider his neck. It looks almost too delicate to hold up that shaggy head.

"Mom?"

"Yes?"

"It's an invitation to a preview night. In May. But what's this?"

His finger, once tiny and perpetually grasping for mine, is huge now as it simultaneously points and blocks.

"Honey, move your finger so I can see... Oh."

I sigh.

"Summer work packet means work you need to do before the school year begins. Like homework. It's not bad, promise."

I wait for the protest. Instead he nods, then yawns.

"You're still pretty tired. You didn't get home until really late last night, and we turn the clocks forward tonight. You need to go to bed early, OK?"

He nods again, then leans against me, and I wonder how much of this agreeability is physical exhaustion and how much is emotional; the trip was hours late returning because a classmate suffered a severe allergic reaction at dinner, paramedics were called, the student transported and admitted to the hospital. This only weeks after another fifth grader was diagnosed with leukemia.

"Mommy?" My heart sings when he forgets his new maturity and calls me this.

"Yes, baby."

"I love you."

I have to go up on my toes and lift his moppy hair to kiss his forehead. "I love you, too."

My boy.
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