The rustle of the leaves. The sound of the cars rushing in the freeway. Dogs barking. Soft humming music. They all lull me to sleep. My special lullaby.
Early to rise, just in time to see the sunrise. Lights on, the entire house comes alive. Staring up at the ceiling, waiting for the shower to be free. Bright, colorful designs on warm blankets that make it hard to get up.
6:40. The last alarm. Sometimes forgotten. Actually, no, it’s usually forgotten. Backpack, earphones, charger, books. All checked, now rush out the door. Run to catch the morning bus, barely in the nick of time.
School is just ahead, better send a text. Less than a minute later, a response. Routine, but a guarantee of a father’s love. My fated enemy; stairs must be faced before being worthy of my favorite place: the library.
School is out, time to head home. Packed bus, earphones in, book in hand, ready to depart. Home is just ahead, better send a text again. Same response, same caring routine.
Dogs jumping up, tails wagging, their paws on white jeans leaving prints. A smile instead of a grimace before heading in, warrior paint already on my face. Chores, some routine, some extraordinary and highly infuriating.
Homework next. Honestly, nothing else is needed. Drains your brain, makes you wish for a bed. But a loving hand gives you a small treat: hot chocolate, PB&J, anything sweet really. Spirits revived, you carry on.
Once in bed, sleep doesn’t come quickly. Stare at ceiling, listen to my lullaby, while thinking about the little things that give my life meaning.