from the first day of school, my life took a masterful change. Oh yes. School was a dream. I could not believe that it was my time to experience something akin to heaven. as I grew and formulated a narrow, but forever expanding view of learning, my entire family encouraged me by painting a continuous picture of what school would mean for me. I was continually prepared for school. I even knew the alphabet and the essentials for reading. my brothers taught me arithmetic through the sharing of their class materials, and even created new ways of understanding by using “stuff” we had in our bedrooms; like normal boys stuff. they always spoke highly of their classrooms and teachers.
much later in our development, my two brothers and i, although black, felt we led a Norman Rockwell kind of existence. While the world and most white americans spent their days belittling, discriminating, hanging, ignoring, harassing, denying, refuting, or whatever else it took to prevent a group of involuntary workers access to the rights of citizenry, three very young boys were prepping each other to rise as significant in classrooms of the day.
my mother walked me to school on the first day by holding my right hand as we walked to school. I had the best escort possible, and she was proud that her little son was on his way to the first day of school. The two of us were a two person parade. Shoulder’s straight, gait purposeful, and our faces represented every family member we could think of. Pride. We were ready for school. We knew it was going to take both of us as partners to mount this hill and do well.
Mom remained at school far after the other mother’s left. She didn’t have a job to attend. There were no meetings. No one was ill. No one gave birth. There was nothing more important than our being at school. Nothing. Mom was not lonely being the only parent sitting in the kindergarten classroom. Just the opposite. To her, life was re-beginning. She had a second start at her education because I was attending. (Why she was so thrilled with my experience compared to the other two boys will be discussed later.)
more to come