Disguised as an ordinary day

In minutes, the sun will rise on the first day of second grade. I look out the kitchen window while I pour the coffee, notice the black backdrop still hanging from the sky. The sun must have hit snooze, pulled dark clouds back over her head. She hides while the rain bullies the height out of the grass. My unsuspecting windows stay open, and morning creeps through the screens smelling like wet bark and frizzy bangs.

I wonder where I'll stage the first-day-of-school picture. I wonder where I put the umbrella. I wonder if it will always feel this anti-climatic--like why wouldn't the bus be stopping to pick him up in half an hour--hasn't it always?

I finish packing the lunch. I set a bowl of yogurt in front of him, a spoon to his left.

I find the umbrella, drape his rain coat over his backpack. It stops raining (and only because I finally found the umbrella).

The dogs paw at the screen door, desperate to join this front porch photo shoot. He says things like "I'm only gonna do lip smiles" and "Dontcha think that's enough pictures, mom?"

 And I say things like "show me that smile, mister too cool for school" and "just a few more pictures, just a few more."
 And just like that, there goes another First, slipping by disguised as an ordinary day.

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