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I thought I’d share another first.
Because Shannon had to report to the eye surgery center Tuesday morning, I took Ben to school. (More on the latest eye news at another time.)
On that day Ben was his class’s star person, a distinction that allows the child to bring in a favorite thing to show the class. It can be a toy, a book, a stuffed animal — whatever. The last time Ben was featured, he took a wheelie stunt Lightning McQueen with a pull cord that makes its oversized back wheels spin very fast.
Shannon was hoping he would take something a little more high-brow this time.
I slept about an hour later than usual. After showering and dressing, I overheard Ben and Shannon’s conversation via the baby monitor.
“Mommy, I’m the star person today.”
“I know. What do you want to take?”
“Um, don’t you want to take a book?”
“No, everybody loves goats.”
The sound of Shannon digging through one of Ben’s toy drawers.
“I’ll take my horse. Everybody loves horses.”
In the kitchen, I poured Ben and me some cereal, which he barely touched. Oh boy, it’s gonna be a great morning for his teachers.
Shooting for a departure time of 8:30, Ben and I got in the van and left at 8:34. Not bad for a Dad working on his own at a new task. We arrived with about five minutes to spare. I pressed the button to open Ben’s door and the nice lady unstrapped him from his seat and put his backpack on him (inside which I had placed his lunch, which I prepared).
“Bye, Ben. I love you,” I said.
“Say, ‘See you later,'” the lady instructed him.
“See you later, Dad,” Ben said.
Moving on to allow the minivan/SUV processional to continue, I looked in my rear view mirror. There was Ben, walking purposefully up the sidewalk to the front doors, his backpack bouncing lightly. Plenty of volunteers watched the kids’ every move.
Although I knew Shannon had left Ben at the curbside pickup many times, and I leave him and Shannon every day to go to work, I felt just a hint of sadness that he had acknowledged me only after being prompted.
Apparently I didn’t hear Shannon very well when she gave me the rundown on how to prepare Ben for school. She said tonight that she told me very specifically what to have him wear, and that it would be warm today.
I dressed him in jeans and a long-sleeve corduroy oxford, with navy socks that Shannon said didn’t match his shirt. I tried to tell her that a guy’s socks are supposed to match his pants, not his shirt, so navy technically was just as good as white. She wasn’t buying it.
“I’m glad you dropped him off, so maybe they’ll know that you dressed him,” she said later.
Eye of the Beholder
When Shannon came to my work after her surgery, I popped outside real quick to exchange key rings with her. Without going into details, I’ll just say that last weekend we learned the hard way that it’s easy to accidentally enable the alarm on the convertible, and until the remote control unlock button is pressed (within range), the key is completely useless in the ignition.
Outside, she has to wear dark goggles (picture in an earlier post) that smack of The Matrix. They protect the eye from harsh sunlight and from dust. Strangely, she’s allowed to remove them when driving, an activity that, when done wrong, can produce flying glass and metal.
I noticed my boss walking across the parking lot. “Hey, (boss), have you ever met my wife?”
“No, I haven’t.”
“Well, I’m sure she’s real thrilled about meeting someone right now.” She had on no makeup (not allowed in surgery) and the goggles. I proudly introduced her, because I love her and all.
My boss looks a LOT like comedian/actor/writer Steve Martin. I would have lost it if he’d offered to design her a small handle positioned between the two eyepieces.
Instead, he asked a few questions about what’s going on with her eyes. For all of you, those answers will come later.