I hadn't noticed the hair until I glimpsed in the rearview mirror at the bus stop.
"I'm looking a little like that guy, Bruno Mars, Claire."
"More like a Who from Who-ville, Mom." she said.
"I guess I should've worn a hat."
"Ah, who cares, Mom," she said, patting down the wild piece.
Earlier we did our sit thing.
It's very simple.
I set the timer on the stove (so we don't miss the bus).
We sit on the sofa,
my arm around Claire,
heads leaning in, touching.
We don't usually speak.
We breathe, sigh, lean in closer.
Stay until we hear the beep.
When Jesse was little, we'd take baths together and make up funny stories about our neighbors, Helen and Dale. He was a harmless drunk. Helen was a gnome-ish woman who didn't smell too good but she was very kind and we'd chat on the communal back porch whenever I watered my plants. Back then, I didn't have the luxury of sitting with Jesse at the bus stop. First off, she walked to school. Secondly, I'd be driving to my teaching job in New Jersey.
I loved those baths.
Claire was feeling her usual nervousness about school.
In a 6:45 in the morning philosophical moment I said,
The whole thing isn't what we think it is. I mean, we project all this worry and apprehension onto our day but really if we lift our vibration to peace, love and joy, we're good.
Yes, I said, lift our vibration.
Mom never mentioned this when I was a kid.
"So, hang out in the peace love joy zone. I'm gonna try it."
"Really? You don't think the vibration thing is a bit too...?"
"No, thanks. Really."
The bus came.
I got a peck on the cheek.
She leapt out of the car.
I whispered my usual morning send-off.
"Don't let the bastards get you down."
And I love you.
¡Que viva el amor!
top photo of Charmlee Park, CA courtesy of Michael