You get started about 6:15, as normal. You check on everyone, wake those who need it, and start preparing breakfast. One by one, the boys come into the kitchen, helping with breakfast, making lunch, or just grabbing a plate and eating, as their assignments and inclinations require.
Finally you realize that you've had 13 boys check in. A quick head count, and you head towards the room belonging to your 14-year old piano prodigy.
Instead of coming to breakfast, Van stopped to work on a section of a new song with which he's having problems. He seems to be listening to the same section on youtube over and over. You stop the computer, tell him he's going to make his brothers (with whom he shares a ride) late, and that he needs to go grab breakfast, then dress.
Van drags his feet, but goes when you demand. You ask him how he's feeling and if anything is wrong, but he assures you 'fine' and 'no' (Van is often less than talkative in the mornings, and you've considered firming up his bedtime, but he always resists that idea).
Time passes, lunches are made, breakfasts are eaten, dishes are rinsed and put in the dishwasher. You check your shopping list with Kenny, check on everyone (again telling Van to hurry up and finish dressing), and then put in a load of laundry, while waiting for everyone to leave.
As the boys gather in groups for their rides, you realize there's still an unclaimed lunch bag, and you don't have to ask to whom it belongs. One look in Van's room, and you tell John to take the rest of his group on to school. As soon as everyone is out the door, you return to Van's room.
He's sitting there in his uniform shirt, but he doesn't even have pants on yet.
"What are you doing?"
"I've almost got this part."
"You're supposed to be at school!"
"I'll be ready in a minute."
"Your brothers have already left."
"I told you to get ready, I told you more than once."
"Are you sick?"
You check - no fever. Apparently he made a breakfast sandwich and brought it back to his room, but he ate most of it.
"Is there something wrong at school?'
"Then why aren't you ready?"
"I'm working on this," he says in a tone of voice that suggests if you weren't such an idiot, you wouldn't have needed to ask.
"So you disobeyed me and are going to be late to school because you didn't want to wait until piano practice time to practice piano?"
"I've almost got it! I probably would have it if you'd just leave me alone!"
Is it time to leave him alone?