M never needed an excuse like Halloween to put on a costume. His first trip to a barbershop, he was Batman. His second trip…Batman again. Most trips to the grocery store between ages 4 and 5…he wore his bald cap. He also wore wigs…not “girl” wigs, just funny wigs.
Many mornings, after excruciatingly painful homework battles, I would be tricked into a smile…he had left his silly, brown wig at the homework table. You see, M didn’t need a destination outside the house to “get into character.” Some nights I was tutoring Napolean Dynamite, some nights it was some groovy dude, other nights it was just M wearing his Harry Pottter glasses.
Night after night we worked together on school work at the dining room table. These homework showdowns were agonizing…for both of us. M was so easily distracted, and he was always moving – physically and mentally. If I was lucky, I could get 3 math problems out of him before he’d announce, “Wait. I have to go get something,” Or, “Mom, can I just go shoot hoops for 15 minutes?”
The poor kid struggled so much with school, and tonight I wish I cold talk to him about it. If I could, I would tell him that I love how many nights we spent at that dining room table together. I would thank him for trying to teach me how to spin a pencil around my knuckles. I would thank him for tricking me so many times with fake dead bugs. And I would thank him for making me smile. I miss him.