He surprises me.
He’s a happy-go-lucky little boy that lives in the now. And the now is usually happy. Except when it’s not.
Fortunately, a return to happy is but a tickle away. His days are filled with smiles and laughter, intents typically on nothing more than sharing that joy.He is not the least concerned with detail. He’s yet to hold a crayola correctly or for that matter, a fork. Lines do not intimidate him and he will color beyond their restrictive borders without fear. An illegible scribble is a masterpiece and deserves to be hung in places of prominence. Red is the only statement on his color palate.
He counts. …10, 11, 14, 17… and all letters are A. He will laugh directly at you should you attempt to correct him as if to say, “you sad, silly little man. I pity you and your obsession with life’s minutiae.”
And so he surprises me. As we walk through the school to his classroom older children will stop and say, “Hey, Zander.” They know him. He smiles. He waves. He greets his classmates in the hallway as they arrive calling them by name.
“Hey, Colin. Hey, Olivia.” I had no idea he was even aware that there were other children in his class, much less that he would know their names. It doesn’t stop there. “Hey, Lunchroom Lady.” (He doesn’t know her name but at least he knows what she does.) “Hey, Mr. Tommy.”
He knows the school custodian! His name is Tom and the Lunchroom Lady got quite the chuckle when Zander referred to him as Tommy. None-the-less he knew.
And then it was my turn to chuckle. The other morning as we made our way into the school we walked past the priest and without hesitation Zander smiled, waved and offered as nonchalant as if he were speaking to me, “Hey, God.”