And here we are again. In the car just after 8am, willing the warm air to push faster through the vents, our breath pooling in clouds in front of our eyes. “Do you think I remember how to get there?” I ask her. “I’ll help you!” she says. And off we go.
Here we are again, her small fingers wrapping around mine and clasping with surprising strength in the open gate of the school playground. She’ll go and be fine and won’t shed a tear. We’ve been talking about this moment for days and beneath the cold and the hesitation and the dreams still fresh in her mind of pajama mornings with waffles and Legos, she really wants to be here. But this moment is the hardest. So she holds on tight and I try to break free and I spend the ride home wishing I had just let her hold on until she was ready.
Here we are again, in the car heading backwards, away from her and it feels so strange. A man is pulling strings of white lights off a tree as we pass and as we drive the season is dismantled and tucked away. This is it now, we’re in it, the velocity of the routine will now carry us forward, feeling strange and awkward yet vaguely familiar and it’s that vague familiarity that will keep us moving though we’re a bit unsure and still wishing for Sunday.
Here we are again, taking off shoes and coats and settling into a house that feels just perfectly sized when we’re all together but far too big when it’s just us two. But we bustle about, cleaning up breakfast dishes again and pulling out toys again and trying to just keep moving so that we forget that we feel a little bit lost and that something is missing.
Here we are again and it’s not even noon and my sights are set on 3:00 because after that the day takes care of itself and she comes home and then he does too and we’re together again and I can forget for a few hours that we haven’t been lounging around all day. I can, again, move about to the cadence of playtime and dinner making and questions and answers. And just yesterday I was starting to feel ready, the questions and answers dragging on me and feeling heavy and oh the quiet, I want the quiet. But now I have it and I miss the noise.
Here we are again, starting another year and it’s only a matter of time before I forget about stockings and stars and twinkling lights as we find the groove and settle into it, prepared to take another year by storm.
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