Step by step
Ritual by ritual
I live another day
Another rushed breakfast, another drive to work. Another set of academic periods with ELA or math or accompanying a student to inclusion class.
Another drive back.
Another set of dinners arranged under plastic wrap. Instructions: microwave 2 minutes.
Another dash back to work. Another busload of kids. Another set of arguments, “can you help me with my math?” Another “what’s this word?” answered.
Another set of parents signing out their kids.
Another drive home to my own kids.
Another set of whiteboard instructions for the next day. Who needs a trumpet, sneakers for gym class, do your homework, call mom, empty the dishwasher please.
Another 3 chicken strips and ranch dressing.
Another 3 cosmetic wipes. Another 8 minute shower. Wash, condition. Finger through the biggest, worst knots.
Another set of pills.
Another piece written surreptitiously on the phone. In the bathroom.
Please let me sleep. Please let the pills work tonight. I only want to sleep.
I want to want to wake up.
I want to see a future. I want them to flourish.
I want him to care. But I can’t make him do it.
I want to care. I can’t make myself do it. I can only keep up the routines.
I want to be able to sleep. And sleep and sleep.