You see, I have this overwhelming need to be considerate. Yesterday when I picked Samuel up from school rather than sending him on the bus to Valley Achievement Center I went directly to the special ed bus to let the driver know she didn’t have to wait.
Mr. R, one of the autism teachers, gave my face & scar the once over briefly. This is always strange to watch: people take the scar in and then pretend they didn’t notice it because they don’t know what to say. Perhaps they don’t realize I survived as a child by quick reads of faces.
Anyway, I reached past Mr. R and his stilted greeting and told the bus driver Samuel wouldn’t be coming so she didn’t need to wait. In the past, bus drivers complained if they weren’t told, since Samuel is one of the few children who is mainstreamed and consequently gets to the bus later than the other children.
The transportation department in my school district is the most personalble, easy to work with department there. I have been known to call in the very early morning with requests and they have been honored. I have argued and debated and argued... and gotten my way. Perhaps this is a part of my conscientiousness.
I saw the driver and said, “Hi, I just wanted to tell you I am picking Samuel up today.”
The woman wasn’t the driver who had been there in the past. “Thanks – oh, and I used to drive Samuel when he was very little.”
My eyes widened. “You did?” I said, attempting to not let my speechlessness strangle me.
“Yes, I drove Bus 137 back then,” she continued.
My hand covered my mouth. “That was you?” I said, stepping onto the bus. “Oh, you were the best bus driver ever.” I continued, “Your name is Chris, right? Oh, please let me see you… you have no idea. You just have no idea…”
I used to have her cell phone number on my phone and I would call her at 6 am if the children needed to be picked up. She would drive right to my door and pick up Emma and Samuel. Sometimes she dropped them off right at my door if I didn’t appear at the bus stop.
In my phone directory she was listed as “Chris, the best bus driver.”
I reached up to hug her, “That was an awful, awful year for Samuel,” I explained. “That was before he was diagnosed and that Principal at that school literally threw him under the bus.”
I had to cover my quivering chin with my hand.
“I can’t believe it is you.”
Later I asked Samuel about Chris, the afternoon driver. I asked if he remembered her from kindergarten. He grunted a non answer and later said to me, “Please don’t talk about the past to me ever again. If you talk to me about the past, I will tell you how old I am going to be on my birthday. I will tell you my shoe size!”
We joke about these two topics, especially, because I like to fuss over him growing up.
Somehow, though, I feel blessed that Chris is a thread in the beginning and the end of his elementary school years, a consistently loving person in his life whether he knew it or not. As a Mommy, I knew it.
For that reason and probably more I can’t put into words, I am grateful for her presence in our lives again.
Be sure to "Like" WritingCampwithJJS on Facebook (THANK YOU!)
Do you have a lot of stuff to get done but can never seem to find the motivation? We have a solution - Get stuff done while having lots of fun at Passion Activator Friday - November 16, 2012 Check it out!
© 2012 by Julie Jordan Scott