My kids never took the bus to school.
For the last decade, mornings have been crazy as Michael and I tried to get the two kids to their respective schools. I always loved driving them…it was my time to catch up and talk to my girls with no distractions. Michael would go one way and I would go another, switching destinations each day. No matter how early we woke up, it always ended up in a mad dash, with the kids putting their shoes on in the car while shoving a banana in their face. Then, a few hours later, I was back in the carpool lane, waiting for them to get back in the car and talk.
I loved listening to the stories – the good (I got an A on my science test!), the bad, (I had no one to eat lunch with today) and the ugly (a fashion faux pas). It was our time alone together, where I could listen to every little thing that was going on in their hearts.
For the last three years, Autumn has been driving herself to school, leaving the car rides to Odessa. This year, however, out of nowhere, Odessa insisted on taking the bus!
At first, I fought against it – how could she take our time together away from me? But the more I thought about it, the more I realized that it would be good for her. The kids love the bus: it’s social and it gives them a sense of independence.
This year is one of the first times in a long time that Michael Chiklis has been home in the fall, so he has been in charge of getting Odessa to the bus stop in the morning. For some reason, even though Odessa had been getting up with plenty of time to spare, she still seemed to be missing her bus pretty consistently.
After a few weeks, I called in the big guy and asked what the problem was. He stuck out his chin a little defiantly and with a tight voice said, “I don’t get enough time with the kid.” Then he quickly grabbed a screwdriver and murmured something about fixing the television. Though I knew there was absolutely nothing wrong with our TV, I let him walk it off. Odessa has been making the bus more and more now…but about once a week, I’m not surprised to hear that she’s somehow missed it.