Thursday, September 4, 2008

We Are Nothing If Not Full of Drama

Alternatively titled: "Because Even If nothing Is Wrong, We Should Probably Create the Illusion That Something Has Gone Awry."

We decided to put Jack on the special ed bus after school. His bus arrives in front of my house at 3:16. Sam's bus arrives around the corner between 3:20 and 3:30. We can make it work as long as no one is either late or early. Yesterday was the first day they took the buses, and all went smoothly.

Today Jack's bus rolled up at 3:16 and the bus driver stuck her head out of the window. "He's not on the bus," she said. "I don't know why, but as we were passing by your house, it occurred to me that he's not here."

I think you all would have been proud to see how well I held my shit together.

I had my cell phone in hand, so called the school and started asking where my special education kindergartner was. I think I gave out my fair share of heart attacks today. The principal came on the line, told me that they put Jack on the bus, and asked to speak to the bus driver. I stepped on the bus to hand my phone to the driver and...wait for it...there was Jack. Quietly waiting on the bus. There the whole time. Sitting right next to the aide.

"He didn't say, 'There's my house,'" said the driver.

Yeah. Duh.

I think I've been through this before.

On the plus side, I don't think they're going to forget who he is again.


From Jack's communication notebook: He did his work on the color yellow soooooo fast that he got to pick a prize from the prize basket. AND he happily shared computer time by taking turns with a classmate.

That's right. Jack's a total rock star.


  1. Oh. My. God. They expect the kid to serve as their navigational system too?

    Two kids sick the first week of school, and all this too, and yet you still crack wise. YOU, my dear, are the rock star.

    But Jack rocks too. Way to go, dude.

  2. Hey, they aren't driving school busses for nothin'.

    * this comment not meant to offend any bus drivers...

  3. Holy cow. I can't believe they would expect him to know his house. Shouldn't the aide have known where he was supposed to get off? Yikes.

  4. Dear god. Where do you live, again? Just want to make sure we don't inadvertently move to your district. (No, seriously, I'd move if it meant we'd be neighbors because who else could keep me laughing through the pain???)

  5. Yikes!

    And that's why I don't let my kids ride the bus. There private school gets out at 2:45. If they took the bus, they'd take a bus to the public school at 3:00pm (which is a mile down the road) and then board a different bus home around 3:15. That bus would arrive at our house around 3:35, almost a full hour after they get out. When I pick them up, we arrive home at 2:50.

    Well that and our town's bus drivers are notorious for causing/getting into accidents.

  6. You are so kidding me!!!!!

  7. oh geez. I guess you should feel good they are honest about their incompetence? Sigh. Hoping all of the issues get worked out soon!

  8. OH my goodness. I'm assuming the aide didn't know who you were?? Otherwise I would think she would have said something as you stood there talking to the bus driver.

    Yesterday our bus pulls up and Noah gets off but not Drew. I call the school and find out the whole 4th grade class missed the bus bell. Great. Well the bus went back and got them and dropped him off so all was well but there was that split second where I freaked just a bit.

  9. Geez. So far we've had no drama of this kind, but I'm waiting for it (the bus(es) are actually dropping them off at our temp. digs!) Glad he was there on the bus.

  10. Good for Jack for having an awesome day! I'm totally ecstatic for you both! And I would have totally had a heart attack if the principal had said my kid was put on the bus but didn't get off. Props to Jack for being such a well behaved bus rider and rockin' the color yellow at school!

  11. WTF???? Still, I suppose it's better than last year, right? Small consolation, I know. Sheesh!

  12. Unbelievable. Actually, the sad thing is, it's NOT unbelievable. Sorry you had to go through that. I guess there's a reason the bus driver's not a rocket scientist. . .but STILL--all you've got to do is take a look around. He's a CHILD for God's sake.

    Good for Jack, too. He is too cute for words. . .

  13. Yeah Jack! I love hearing his success stories.

    Sorry about the bus though - that's kind of disconcerting...

  14. At least this time, you had a bus and a child, but someone had their head up their ass. Last year, you had no bus, no child and many heads up asses - along with your head which was exploding. So next year should go much better, huh?

    And rock on, Jack! WTG!

  15. Seriously, you need a massage and a glass of wine. Damn, what a week.

    Good for Jack for having such a great day!

  16. I'm glad you are still at least trying to work with the bus system and letting them ride the bus. Not only does it reduce your carbon footprint but once everyone gets their heads out of their asses, it's a great way to instill self reliance in your kids. You're doing the right thing. Oh, and my mother's group is getting together tonight and since several of us read you and My Party of Six, we'll undoubtedly be talking about you. Just in case your ears start ringing, you'll know why.

  17. I am impressed with your ability to not freak out. I would have been a mess.

    I'm so happy that Cordy's bus driver this year is the same as last year. She's great and insists on seating Cordy near the front so she can interact with her more.

    Glad Jack had a good day!

  18. anonymous but sympatheticSeptember 5, 2008 at 7:49 PM

    Um, sounds scarey. Given your experience last year, why would you continue to allow your child to ride the bus - maybe this is part of his development plan?

  19. A but S: Thank you. I let him ride the bus because he wants to ride the bus. And my other son wants to ride the bus. And it's easier, cheaper, and involves less driving if he rides the bus. At least on this bus, he was never actually lost. I'm trying to have some faith.

  20. All right Jack! Woo hoo!

    (what do buses have against you anyway??)

  21. Where did they train this lady to be a sped bus driver that she doesn't understand some kids have communication issues? And besides, he's a freakin' KINDERGARDENER!!!!


    Seriously, our sped bus drivers are specially trained not just generally, but specifically for each child. It is one the reasons Joey gets the same bus driver year to year- she's trained to specifically know his house, and his issues. It doesn't take long. "This kid goes to this address. He's autistic, so he might do a runner on you, and doesn't speak much. Mom will probably hold him inside instead of having him wait on the street because of the running thing- which is the issue that puts him on your bus, instead of the regular ed bus."

    See? Didn't take a minute. :P

  22. Um, excuse me? He was supposed to tell her where to stop?

    Idiot bus driver.

    But then again adrenaline burns a shite load of calories...

  23. Hi - I posted that Sympathetic comment and realized afterwards, what a stupid comment. First, you have a lovely family and don't need sympathy...I meant empathy. And second - we all have those dramatic moments with our families (to say scarey was overstating!) And, you don't need third parties second guessing your approach to both your son's interests and his continued growth and development.
    So again, I'm very sorry for the poorly considered comment - and for this rather wordy post.

  24. Oh my.
    I think the lesson to any newer parents here is don't go out to the bus corner without your cell phone! (or perhaps drive your child or consider homeschooling.)

  25. A but S, there is absolutely no need to apologize. I welcome ALL comments. You know, except spam.

    I happily take any and all advice, comments, suggestions and run them through my filter to apply them to my life and family (or not). My theory is that no knowledge or suggestions are bad to get. It's all information to think about.

    Thank you for your thoughtfulness.

  26. And the aide? The aide was doing what?

  27. Oh good God. Read what has been going on on my blog.


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