My morning routine during the work week is pretty typical. I’m usually up by 5:30 a.m. and my son usually drags himself out of the bed by 6:30 a.m. There’s always a constant, “Kobe, hurry up and get dressed” yell coming from my bedroom. Unlike myself, he’s not a morning person. Usually, on a good day, we’re out of the house by 7:15 and I drive him to school, but this morning he wanted to walk. I don’t live in what some may describe as a ‘bad’ neighborhood. Columbia, Maryland has it’s fair share of crime, that usually includes home break-ins & robberies, but you rarely hear about murder and violent crimes happening. With all of that said, I’m still cautious when it comes to my son.
Anyone who knows my son, knows he’s the complete opposite of me. He’s the extrovert to my pseudo-introvertness. He’s the optimist to my pessimism. My son refuses to speak ill of people, even when those same people have spoken ill of him. I occasionally ask myself at times, “Where did this kid come from?”. Our relationship isn’t filled with the typical parent/child dynamics. He’s his own person with his own opinions. I give him certain freedoms that most parents wouldn’t think of. The only thing I hold a tight reign on is his clothing. He still hasn’t figured out that you can’t wear two different plaid patterns. We talk about everything and he’s not afraid to ask me a question, and I never shy away from giving him answers. I remember shortly after turning 11, he ran into my bedroom to inform me about his first ejaculation. I looked from behind my book, and the first thing that came out of my mouth was, “I hope you didn’t touch the doorknob”. All he could do was laugh, but he did say no.
This morning, after he asked if he could walk to school, I was hit with a very melancholy feeling. I didn’t want to say no to his request, because I didn’t want him to think I was treating him like a baby, because after all he’ll be 13 in May. It was at that moment when I realized why I always made it a point to drop him off to school every day. As a parent, you never realize what will happen to your child after they leave your presence. You never know what’s lurking around the corner. During our 3 minute ride from the house to the front of his school, we talk. We say our “I love yous” and wish each other a great day. Before he leaves my car, we give each other kisses on the cheek. He acts like he hates it when I grab his face, but deep down inside, I know he loves it.
My son is my world, just as Trayvon Martin was his parents world. Sure we have our parent/child arguments. Of course I’d love it if he was getting a higher grade in Science this marking period, but if something every happened to him, I probably wouldn’t know what I would do. This morning, Insanity Report, tweeted about how well Trayvon’s parents are holding up in the light of events from the past month. I could only hope to be that strong.
This is why I make an effort to take my son to school in the morning, this is why I make an effort to make sure I let him know how much I love him after I drop him off at school, even though just about every morning we argue about his clothes. Although, I share a lot with my son in regards to things and people he should watch out for, I try not to tarnish his optimism. This morning we didn’t get to have our talk. I watched him & his backpack run out of our condo’s parking lot. I got into my car and caught up with him before he crossed the street. I yelled, “Be safe, young man” and he said he loved me.
Not to long ago I received a text message from my son and he asked if he could attend the Trayvon Martin rally this weekend in DC. He went on to say that he knows why I don’t like him walking to school alone or staying out late at night, because of who/what he might encounter and he wants to march in honor of Trayvon and his parents. Before I answered his question, I asked him where was he texting me from, because phones were not allowed in the classroom. He said the bathroom stall, yeah, I forgot who I was dealing with. This weekend, my son will march in honor of Trayvon and his parents.
My kid is amazing, just in case you were wondering.