Table of Three for Homework Please

My nervousness caused me to almost pour lemonade instead of orange juice into Steve’s glass at breakfast. I went back to the icebox and got out the right drink without anyone noticing.  I had already smoked two cigarettes instead of my usual one while everyone was dressing and even the second one didn’t steady my nerves.  I barely slept last night too.  The children were fighting over something at the breakfast table but I didn’t even hear a word they said and eventually Steve told them to stop and get ready to walk to the bus stop.  When Steve picked up his briefcase to leave, he leaned over to kiss me, which I barely felt.  He lingered a moment to get my attention and I finally snapped back to attention.  Steve pulled a box out from underneath the table that I didn’t even see him bring into the kitchen.  He told me to open it before I left for class and off he went to work.  I was so surprised that he even remembered that my classes started today, that I just weakly thanked him and said goodbye.

After cleaning up the dishes, I put the big box on the table and opened it.  Inside was a beautiful leather satchel to use for my school books.  There was a note inside that touched my heart.  Steve was encouraging me to do well in school.  What a guy!

I felt like a regular college student as I walked across the campus to my class.  I was glad to still fit in the student desks. Lucy was an entertaining teacher and had us all introduce ourselves.  There were others in the class like me who had just returned to school and I even exchanged phone numbers with another woman who looked about my age and had introduced herself as a housewife also.  Lucy gave out reading and writing assignments that had to be completed before the next class in two days.  The class officially met two days each week and there would be reading and writing assignments each week.  The assignments would be graded and some would be read to the rest of the class.  Oh mercy.

I went home that afternoon and started a dinner that didn’t require much tending, chili con carne.  Of course, I made my famous cornbread and planned to serve it with cheese and sour cream toppings.  When the children came home from school, they flopped down at the kitchen table to start their homework.  I usually work nearby so I can help them with questions and make their snack.  When I sat down and opened my own book, they stopped eating their cookies and stared at me.  Junior shrugged his shoulders and went back to his arithmetic problems, Daisy was copying spelling words.  I read and underlined information that I wanted to review or felt was important.  When the kids finished and went off to play, I finished making dinner and set the table.

After dinner, Steve poured me a glass of wine and brought it to me when I sat down to read.  I looked up from my textbook and smiled at him.  My beautiful bag was next to my chair.  Steve clinked my glass with his and said he would supervise the bedtime preparations for the kids.  I heard lots of splashing and admonitions  to “brush longer” that made me very grateful for my husband.  Junior and Daisy came to give me kisses goodnight. I heard Steve start to read to the children and quietly went into the master bedroom and turned down the covers and changed into a pretty nightie.  When Steve came in to change for bed, I helped him with his tie and brought out his pajamas.  I thanked him for his present and told him how touched I was by his support.  His thoughtfulness made my first day of school a great success.  I liked being a school girl again.

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