My son sits in his usual spot on the red sofa, but he’s directed me to the opposite corner. Usually he wants me close, but right now he’s drawing and he lives privacy. I can sit nearby with my notebook but “Don’t look!”
A coloring book of magical beasts is spread across one knee and his new sketchbook is propped open on the other.
I love to watch him draw. He truly loses himself when he draws.
He is concentrating hard, but there is a lightness to him that I rarely see. I think he literally weighs less when he is drawing.
His head doesn’t move, but his eyes shift back and forth from coloring book to sketchbook as he tries to captures the image. He draws like I write—catching a line, leaning back to look again, leaning closer to see if it looks right, erasing, trying again. Even with frequent erasing, he abandons piece after half-finished piece. That’s how I write too—my notebook is full of those little practices that go nowhere, left after a few lines to move on to the next piece.
I like silence when I write, but he likes music, so I attempt to write to a pop music playlist of Maroon 5, Rihanna, Justin Bieber. I know all the words too.
Every so often he gives a little shoulder shimmy, bobs his head as he mouths the lyrics. He can’t resist joining in for the high notes, showing off his range.
But then he gets absorbed in a small detail of his drawing, trying to get it just right, and he forgets to sing. Adam Levine has to go it alone through the chorus.
He draws, I write, and in between the sounds and words of the music, there is companionable silence between us. For this moment, there is peace.