Riding in cars with (a) boy

Despite what I have written in the past, if I had to make a top 10 list of reasons why living with someone who is discovering the world from the ground up every day is wildly rewarding, the ride home from school would be near the very top of my list. Where the ride to school in the morning can be a test of my motherly nerves, the ride home in the afternoons is like a little dose of this-is-what-it’s-all-about elixir. Asher is oddly forthcoming with his observations on things (“but I didn’t want to go up the slide and I said so and she said I had to and that hurted my feelings and didn’t make me feel good in my body.” or, “We live on the earth. Is it spinning right now? Is the sky, with the stars, is it spinning too?”) and he makes the sweetest expressions as he’s looking out the window and just sharing his thoughts.

Although he clams up a little whenever the camera is out, I had the idea the other day to try to capture a little of what life is like with him on these daily rides home with the thought that if the camera was going long enough he might forget that it was there (he did). If you’re up for watching the whole thing, I think it gets the best near the end, but of course, Drew and I might be the only ones that find this kind of stuff riveting. (A few notes? Betsy works in his classroom, the spider in question is a big paper mache spider that the kids made, and this was shot on a Friday.)

When I watch this, I am so clearly reminded of how my mom could ask me how my day was when I was in middle school and high school and the perfunctory grunt would head her off at the pass, but at some point the magic of the car would kick in and I would tell her everything at fire hose speed. I think I cried more to my mother about everything in my life in the car than I ever did otherwise…there’s something about the captivity and the moving scenery that can make it a confession booth if there are patient enough ears waiting to hear what’s going to come out. Now as a mother I’m really enjoying being on the receiving end of those thoughts, and I can’t get that kid out of school and into the car fast enough at the end of the day.

(For those of you worried about the safety of this activity, I used the ol rubber band (specifically a headband) on the head rest trick–my eyes were on the road, I promise.)

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