I go to the door of Jackson’s room to watch him sleeping as the dawn light sneaks around the edges of his blind. Waiting for the alarm to go off on the first day of second grade. Watching as Jackson gets startled awake to turn off the alarm. It is 6:30AM. I lay next to him for a moment as he calibrates. Jackson has laid out a button down shirt - the first time he has done that since I can remember. His brother Asher comes in the dark room and tells us all to move over and make room.
Jackson then wants a quick bath to wake up. He puts on Macklemore who sings about a kind of empowerment:
Can we go back, this is the moment Tonight is the night, we’ll fight 'til it’s over So we put our hands up like the ceiling can’t hold us And so we put our hands up And so we put our hands up
We are all getting ready for school. Stephie is already dressed getting breakfast and lunch ready with 4 arms. Bikes are being pulled up to the front of the house. Knapsacks being packed with new supplies, water bottles being filled and closed tightly. We all ride to school. Not sure if it is the last day of summer or just the first day of school. We say hello to the mountains. We try to stay in the bike lanes streaming right into the sun. It is bright and warm as we pull up to school. Long shadows of trees onto the ivy covered walls. Sea of parents and kids. The last day of school before summer break was a cry fest. Everyone was in tears. Today feels happier, but still such melancholy. Meeting new teachers our kids will be with everyday for the next 9 months. Parents fueled by traveling coffee held dearly and a morning schedule with little wiggle room. Jackson joins a soccer game then lines up and parades away with his new class. We take Asher for the transcendental Cortado at Boxcar. The barista has invented his own way of knotting his tie. I make a fuss. He has named it an “orchid knot.” We then saddled up on the bikes and take Asher up the hill to his pre-school. We are singing Oscar Brand's song “When I first came to this Land.” Asher takes the lead:
“When I first came to this land, I was not a wealthy man.
I called my son, my work’s done.”