This morning, Ruby was in the zone. For Ruby, that means being creative. She is almost completely right-brained, which means imagination, creativity and invention. She was drawing and singing and thinking and talking all at once. She has no concept of time or planning ahead. She drew a bunch of pictures on a pad of paper with a dry erase marker – suns with faces and eye patches, flowers and trees, kitties. She was very happy and would have been content to stay home and create.
Alas, it’s Monday. Kindergarten called.
Mommy had to be the bad guy.
“Ruby, time to get dressed. No, your pink poodle shirt is not clean. You’ll have to wear something else. Sorry.”
She went upstairs, notepad and pen in hand. She came back down with a short- sleeved shirt and jean capris on. Yes, folks, it’s summer…in Ruby’s mind.
She goofed around brushing her hair, clowning and joking. She brushed her teeth around a song. Finally, at 8:40 a.m.ish, she got socks. Shoes?! Really? She picked the hardest ones to get on, ones with laces.
Mommy, left-brained – the organized, administrative, list-oriented type – on these matters, took a dim view of it all. She was going to be late. Mommy hates being late for anything, even if it’s not her thing.
Ruby hopped out into the rain and jumped into her seat. She does know how to tie her shoes. We raced to the school – less than a 1/2 mile away. The bell had rung. No duties were outside in the wet and wind. Ruby popped out of the car and raced for the front door.
I sat in the car line behind another SUV. We weren’t moving. The driver was gone, apparently. Sigh. But nor did I see Ruby going into the school. Where was she? Did she go around to the gym? Why did she stop?
The silver SUV moved on, slowly. I pulled up to the end of the sidewalk. Ruby was just standing there in the rain. What now? I rolled down the passenger side window to yell at her to go inside, when I heard the loudspeaker. “I pledge allegiance to the flag…”
Ruby, and a couple of other kids behind her, had stopped in honor of the Pledge of Allegiance. They were perfectly still, engrossed in the task. My eyes stung with tears. Her patriotism and loyal heart made the other kids, some older than her, stop in reverence, too.
I rolled the window back up and drove home. I guess it’s okay to be late to school sometimes.