Clouds, May 2010

Clouds, May 2010

Monday, September 26, 2011

new day, same challenge

Hayden bolted out the door this morning when the bus pulled in the driveway-- his backpack was on, and he was ready to go!

And then just like that, he wasn't ready anymore. I was calm, and firm, and I said, "Hayden-- you are going to school on the bus today, just like you've been. You're fine, and I'm very proud of you. Your friends are waiting, and you're going to have a fun day. I will be here when you come home." 

Roughly four minutes, three falls, two sweaty people, and one tear-streaked face later... I turned around, shrugged, and spoke softly to the driver, "I'm sorry." 

He nodded, "I wish I knew how to help you," before closing the doors and pulling away.

Just like on Friday, Hayden's nervous breakdown got worse as the bus drove down the road, and turned out of sight.

Once I cleaned him up as best I could, and changed his shirt, he had stopped crying. That's when I felt a lump begin to form in my throat.

We went outside, and now he would not get in my truck. And of course a neighbor had to be walking up the road, and another one peering out their window at us. Awesome.

The neighbor coming up the street walking their dog said to Hayden, "I thought I just saw your bus?" I did not offer an explanation as to why it left without him. I was in no mood for chit-chat. At this particular point in time, I could not possibly care less if I seemed like a Bitch.

I looked at Hayden and I said, "If you do not get in the car, I will put you in there myself." 

"No I'm not!" 

"No you're not? Yes you ARE. And YES I will."

Eventually I won that struggle, and buckled him in his seat.

Before we even made it out of the neighborhood, he was quiet. And by that time, I was upset enough for both of us.

It was an overcast gray morning, and I pulled into the school with sunglasses on my face and a wad of tissues on my lap.

The bus was still out front, and so was his Aide. And his K teacher. I know he only had to drive one other boy, and the K teacher is not typically outside, so I realized immediately that they must have been waiting for Hayden.

The K teacher headed right for my truck, and I gladly let her get him out. I walked around the other side to get our spare car seat out of the back.

I handed it to the bus driver, and he agreed maybe it would help. He placed it on the bus seat, and then the Aide and the K teacher told Hayden he should make sure it's the right size. So they helped him on the bus, he tried it out, and very calmly walked back off.

(On Friday there had been a note in the communication book, that Hayden kept talking about the car seat on the bus not being the right size. Previous years, Hayden had his own seat on the bus. I just never gave it to the driver this year. First of all, there are only a couple of kids on that bus this year, and Hayden was fine so far sitting in one of the booster seats already on there. He had practice, if you will, during summer program using the car seat that was already in the van.)

When Hayden got home from school the Angels he spent his day with, sent home two things to help us in the morning.

One is a picture of a bus, with a boy in the window, and it reads:
Hayden is going on the bus.

He is going to sit in his car seat.
Hayden will be happy.

The other one is a canvas tote that Ted E. Bear travels in-- he is the kindergarten class mascot. He is allowed a sleepover in each student's home. He arrived with a journal to record a recap of his overnight experience. 

The bus driver gave us specific instructions that Ted E. Bear returns to school on the bus in the morning. Hayden seemed excited in anticipation of this.

In about 13 hours we'll find out if it worked.

I hope those Angels realize that Hayden is not the only one they're helping.

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